As part of its efforts to bring India and Bharat closer ahead of the festive season, Flipkart on Monday announced the onboarding of nearly 27,000 Kiranas across 700 cities to its pan-India supply chain, helping it reach out to millions of new consumers during the upcoming festive event, The Big Billion Days. This will further strengthen and personalise e-commerce experience for its existing 160 million customers, help deepen its reach to newer geographies and consumers and support Kiranas by enhancing their income.
The nation-wide kirana onboarding started about six months ago, undertaken keeping in mind the massive scale of the upcoming festive season, which witnesses heightened demand from customers from across the country and also to grow the business of Kirana partners. Flipkart started with a customised training program to onboard these Kirana partners, with soft skills and the know-how to deal with customer queries or requests on the spot.
Flipkart already has a large supply chain network, currently delivering over 1 million shipments everyday across almost 100% of the pin codes in the country. With the 27,000 additional Kiranas, Flipkart will now be able to elevate not only the consumer experience but also scale up its reach with millions of additional deliveries during the Big Billion Days, especially in Tier 2 and 3 towns. This will also significantly augment the incomes of the Kirana partners.
To seamlessly facilitate the onboarding process and their inclusion in delivery process, Flipkart is leveraging its in-house tech solution called the ‚ÄėAllocation Engine‚Äô, which helps automate allocation of shipments to delivery agents and partners including Kiranas. This becomes important as there is a huge spike in demand during the festive season and deploying tech becomes essential to provide high speed deliveries to consumers, offer flexibility and match the delivery mode based on consumers‚Äô preference. By evenly spreading the shipments across various delivery models, Allocation Engine helps in increasing the efficiency of deliveries and offering better consumer experiences. This large-scale inclusion of kirana stores in one of the largest e-commerce supply chain networks in the country will prove to be a game-changer in alternative delivery models.
Kalyan Krishnamurthy, CEO of Flipkart Group said, ‚ÄúFestive season and the Big Billion Days provide us a great opportunity to further our principles of inclusion and accessibility. Kiranas are the oldest and most widely spread retail format in India which exhibit the modernness of the supply chain and deliver a successful customer experience management model. Our approach to inclusivity for last-mile partners is guided by the synergies we share. After digital payments, the next big revolution in Kirana is going to be ushered in conjunction with e-commerce. It will re-position and re-invent kirana stores as convenience stores from an e-commerce perspective, while offering them a new source of revenue, making it a win-win situation for all.‚ÄĚ
The onboarding of Kiranas will help lakhs of sellers, especially ahead of the crucial festive season, benefit from this expansion and reach out to a pan-India market. From managing the supply chain drivers such as facilities, inventory, information, sourcing and pricing, to maintaining a long-standing relationship with the consumer, Kiranas are a great partner to effectively reach the end consumer.