With customers not stepping out to shop at stores or malls despite Unlock 1.0, 2.0 or 3.0, retailers reached out to customers through WhatsApp.
In fact, most retailers said 40 percent of total sales accrued via WhatsApp from March 25 till date.
“We sold most Bath & Body Works and Beverly Hills Polo Club products through WhatsApp. Shopping via the messaging platform has worked extremely well for us as almost 40 percent of sales was undertaken through home shopping," Tushar Ved, President, Major Brands (India), said. He was speaking at Retail Technology Conclave (ReTechCon) 2020.
Major Brands, which runs brands like Beverly Hills Polo Club, Aldo, Bath & Body Works and Charles & Keith, said they sold more products via WhatsApp.
Battling revenue loss due to the pandemic, brands allowed customers to shop via WhatsApp. Brands sent apparel pictures and links to customers to shop from home.
Titan through its brand Tanishq has sold jewellery worth Rs 10 lakh via video. “We demonstrate the product on video. In most cases, customers comes to just make the payment,” CK Venkataraman, MD, Titan Company said, adding that Rs 15,000-20,000 is the average ticket size for jewellery bought online.
Expressing views on the one thing that brought customers back to brands, Sandeep Kataria, CEO, Bata India, said, “The ability to earn customer’s trust has helped brands sustain the present scenario. That’s what brands need to focus on and continue their efforts to enhance that trust.”
Retailers were also of the view that businesses will have to become flexible to innovate and be ready to change the business plans in this uncertain new world.
While discussing businesses embracing digital transformation, Shaleen Verma, Senior Technical Specialist – Business Applications, Microsoft India, said, “The pandemic compelled businesses to hastily go digital. We need to pause and redraft the future strategy for a sustainable digital transformation.”
Brand leaders agreed that technology is central to the revival and growth in the current situation.
Kumar Rajagopalan, CEO, Retailers Association of India (RAI), is of the view that retailers will take turns to turning to technology to save their businesses, plan better, increase productivity and service their customers.