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Last Updated : Jun 20, 2016 01:04 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

1001 Startup Ideas - Marketplace for Wedding Vendors

The startup idea is to establish a platform for discovering the best wedding vendors. The platform shall have a range of wedding vendors from wedding venues to wedding photographers to caterers.

What is the idea?

The startup idea is to establish a platform for discovering the best wedding vendors. The platform shall have a range of wedding vendors from wedding venues to wedding photographers to caterers.

Market Definition

The global wedding industry has been calculated to be USD 300 billion. In India, however, the wedding industry is about INR 100,000 crore (USD 14 billion approx).  The wedding industry is growing at the rate of 25-30% annually in India. Another view states that the cost of a wedding in India could be anywhere between INR 5 lakhs to INR 5 crores. About 10 million weddings take place in India every year.

Competitor Analysis

Wedding Industry has attracted many players, and there are many websites and businesses which have flourished in this industry,  both online and offline. There are players like wedding plz., as well as bigger rivals like Bandbajaa (an NDTV venture). The business models followed by these websites is different from the idea proposed in this article; the idea intends to be a ‘discovery platform.'

Pain Point & Target Audience

The target audience for this website would be “brides and grooms to be and their immediate families”. Weddings in India are a paramount affair and a lot of time goes into planning them. With the lives becoming busier for couples in India, they are looking forward to a site where they can get honest reviews about the vendors and use them if need be. This platform can provide access to all the vendors of the wedding industry at the tap of a button through the web and an app-based model.

Value Proposition

For couples, it may be tough to find the right suppliers, as they may be scattered across the city. For example, the best and rightly priced vendors are located in areas like Chandni Chowk in Delhi. Customers can have access to these vendors without having to go to Chandni Chowk. The entire service will be free for the customers. The customers will be able to put reviews which will be beneficial for other clients.

Business Model

The website will be free for the customers, and the wedding vendors can list their essential services for free, in case they want to add a video, use a fancy banner or get a single click call connect feature from the website,  they would subscribe to the paid plan. The site can be monetized by various means, one of the ways for the website to earn money could be to charge the vendors who would like to promote themselves on the site.

As the business evolves, the site could also start a premium portal for the elite where the elite customers will pay a sum to get access to the top vendors who provide high profile products and services for the expensive weddings. But this should be implemented, when the website has successfully implemented the discovery platform for the masses.

Way to market

The first step would be to identify and list the vendors on the platform. This would require a lot of work initially as the vendors from various localities would have to be listed. Once a directory of suppliers is created, the company should focus on making the website visible. This would include the use of Google AdWords and writing blogs for the website to make sure the site is visible in top searches for weddings on Google. In addition to this working with matrimonial sites to generate and pass on leads would be a good idea.

Milestones

The website should aim at listing 100,000 vendors in all categories as a first target. Once the biggest directory is created, it would be a big reason for customers to come and check the website. The site should be launched in one city at a time, and the cities where per wedding spend is the highest should come first in the launch sequence. It's equally important to get high-quality servers and super fast load time, as the site would be having a lot of images and videos, make sure you do the initial test load before launching in a city.

Investment Needed For Prototype

For testing & building the prototype, pitch for raising 50K USD from angel investors or incubators like Nasscom 10,000 startups. There should be no office rentals or salary payout; the entire budget should be apportioned for customer acquisition and technology.

Team Capability

You would need to have a wedding Planner as a co-founder as he would know exactly where the vendors are located and the kind of suppliers that customers need. In addition to this, it is advisable to get a UI/UX expert on the team from day one, as user experience would build customer engagement and drive repeat traffic.

Investors / Expert Take

Considering the massive industry size and the potential to grow, the funds in India may be very interested in this business. Funds like Ambit Capital, Outbox Ventures have invested in similar startups in the past. Y-Combinator has also incubated various wedding startups including registrylove. The website would be unique, and if it can show continuous growth regarding users and listings, there is a fair chance of getting traction with other players as well.



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First Published on Jun 20, 2016 12:12 pm
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