In a bid to solve the problem of failed deliveries, Flipkart has launched 20 collection centres across 10 cities in India where customers can come and pick up their orders personally at their convenience. Also Read - Flipkart Big Saving Days sale begins for Plus members: Check top 5 deals on smartphones
Flipkart plans to open 100 such centres by March next year. The main anxiety point Flipkart is trying to address with these collection centres, is delay or failure in delivery due to last mile issues or unavailability of customers at the address for delivery. This exceeds the cost of delivery for Flipkart and the seller. Also Read - iPhone SE 2020 with Rs 10,901 discount during Flipkart Big Saving Days sale: Check the deal
These centres will enable Flipkart to expand into small towns and villages. Smaller cities and towns account for 55 percent of online sales in the country, mainly due to increase in disposable incomes and non-availability of branded goods in these places. However, despite the multiplying demand, Flipkart finds it difficult to cater to them due to poor infrastructure. Also Read - Flipkart Big Saving Days sale dates, top mobile deals announced: Check details here
“Getting logistics right is extremely crucial for e-commerce companies. Our efforts are focused on expanding our delivery network, without compromising on the customer service levels and expectation. We believe this model is a resolution to customer unavailability issues, as it offers consumers a choice to adjust the delivery time & location according to their convinience. It also provides a solution to restrictions for e-commerce entry into tech parks/ gated communities/ universities,” Neeraj Aggarwal, senior director of delivery operations at Flipkart said.
Aggarwal also said that these collection centres will offer add-on services like spot trials, instant returns, cash on return, open box deliveries, product demos, and other third-party repair services to encourage users to use the offline product pickup facility.
Even though product pick-up facility might be a novel idea for small towns and villages, it is difficult to see it manifest in urban cities, where users are heavily accustomed to goods being delivered at their doorstep.