With majority of the physical marketplace going online, the next frontier that seems to storm the digital age and India’s IT sector are the age-old kirana shops. Though today most of the daily need stuff is easily available at the endless online grocery stores, there is a good 65% to 75% of the population that still prefers to shop at the 13 million odd and generations-old kirana shops that the nation has.
One main thing that has kept these kirana stores thriving in our country is the fact that they don’t run purely on cold cash but mostly on stockist-buyer relationship. It is still a common sight to see a kirana owner maintaining a ledger dedicated to one individual family and being maintained over the years. Thus, although a less techno-friendly mode of business, the customer loyalty and retention level here is no doubt high.
The trend is changing though… slowly and steadily. The eCommerce world is witnessing a paradigm shift with the significant entry of many grocery-based eCommerce stores like LocalBanya or BigBasket. More and more kirana stores are fast transforming into e-retailers given the merits of convenience and safety that it brings along. The rising competition in establishing a physical kirana store and the significant shift of consumer interest towards convenient shopping has greatly compelled kirana store owners to rethink.
Well, given the pros and cons of e-retailing, there is still a big question mark on whether or not Internet can be the next kirana shop? All we can say is that considering the fact that there are still more than 10 million kirana stores to jump into the online bandwagon, there is a huge opportunity for ITs to look forward to.