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The online retail industry in India is expected to have a hyper-growth in the next 3-5 years. So it isn’t surprising that we are seeing an ever increasing number of start-ups focusing on this sector. Each trying to get a share of a market that has remained unorganized since ever. In this modern era of online retail there is a company that believes that the Indian markets work best the way they have been. 2SD is the start-up that is helping the mom-and-pop stores of your locality go online and serve their regular customers in an all new way.
The company believes that we as buyers still love to buy our stuff from the regular corner shops of our locality. We have the highest density of shops per person in the world and we are proud of it. So they have built a mobile platform that lets the regular offline retailers stay at par with the new generation of online retailers by tech-enabling them. The 2SD app requires very little technical know-how from the sellers and lets them go online and take orders from their customers in less than three minutes.
Here is a conversation with the team behind this amazing start-up.
What motivated you to start the company and what is it all about?
We feel that there is a well-funded onslaught of online and modern retail that is posing a threat to the Indian mom-and-pop stores. We have created a technology that tech-enables and empowers offline stores to compete and stay relevant in this onslaught. 2SD enables a store to go online and start taking orders in less than 3 mins and it requires very little technical know-how from both the sellers and the users. It is a retail solution custom made for the Indian retailers, keeping in mind their challenges, restrictions and needs.
What is the current Team Size?
We are currently a 6 member team.
How did you hire your initial team?
Our current team comprises of just the founding members with one referral team member.
Which recruiting channels work best for you? Referrals/Job Boards/ Staffing Agencies?
Referrals have worked the best for us.
What are the key factors that you look for in a potential candidate?
We are primarily looking for industry experience and aspirations.
According to you how much is the competition in your vertical? How big is the industry? Who all are your competitors and what are your views on them?
The online retail industry is quite cluttered and rightly so due to the anticipated hyper-growth in next 5 years. While most players are focusing on creating online retail brands, we are making the offline retailers (who still control >90% of Indian retail) go online. The Indian retail Industry is highly unorganized and we feel that it works best that way, so instead of changing it we are tech-enabling that fuzziness in the system. We have close competition from a few start-ups based out of Gurgaon and Bangalore, however, none of them is focusing on micro to small retailers, like we are doing.
What are your marketing strategies? Do you take help of Social platforms to promote ? Which channels have been very effective? Which marketing channels have been super flops?
Marketing strategies are driven by business strategies. We have been focusing on enabling small clusters and thus our marketing efforts have been focused accordingly. Local area traditional marketing have worked best for us while Social Media marketing, despite giving us some online traction, has failed to get any real value in terms of customers and transactions.
What has been your experience with paid marketing channels?
We have not explored any of the traditional paid marketing channels yet.
Can you elaborate on the Challenges in promoting your website/App?
There is too much noise around apps these days, most of which is driven by discounts. In such a scenario, it becomes tough for a tech company to show value which is not expressed in terms of real money.
What is the current traction? Can you share some numbers on Usage and Revenue?
We are live for a little over one month now and we have clocked below traction during this time.
|Transactions per Day (Current)||25-30|
|Average GMV Transaction/Day||5980|
|Cumulative transactions from date of initiation||553|
|Cumulative GMV of transactions||151K|
Based on your experience would you have any advice for the new Entrepreneurs/Startups?
We feel that it is really important for businesses to be based upon good fundamentals, solving real problems, so as to make them sustainable. Copy of something in US, may not really work in India.