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Storyboard18 | Battle for Bharat: Meesho launches campaign to bring small businesses online, as ecomm space heats up

Storyboard18 | Battle for Bharat: Meesho launches campaign to bring small businesses online, as ecomm space heats up

By Saumya Tewari   IST (Updated)

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The marketing push is in line with the company’s vision to enable 100 million small businesses to succeed online in India, says Meesho’s Laksminarayan Swaminathan, in an exclusive chat with Storyboard18.

In a bid to bring more small businesses online, e-commerce platform Meesho has launched a new campaign, ‘India bhar pe chayega’ which highlights how sellers can grow their business with the platform. The marketing push is in line with Meesho’s vision to enable 100 million small businesses to succeed online in India.
Conceptualized by FCB Ulka Bengaluru, the campaign aims to help create awareness on how small and medium businesses can grow their business exponentially accessing millions of Indian customers. Meesho’s pitch to these small business owners is fuss-free, focusing on its wide customer base, pan-India logistics, safe payments and customer support capabilities. The television commercial features actors Deven Bhojani and Nitesh Pandey explaining the entire process and benefits of being a Meesho seller.
Meesho claims that it was the first e-commerce platform in India to introduce 0% commission for all its sellers. To be sure, In December 2021, Moneycontrol reported that two of India's dominant e-commerce companies- Amazon and Walmart-owned Flipkart have slashed the commissions they earn from sellers on their platform, amidst rising competition in the space. While Flipkart has promised sellers zero commissions for products priced below Rs 300, Amazon is offering flat 2% commissions for products in that range.
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Building the reach
Laksminarayan Swaminathan, CXO, supply growth at Meesho, tells Storyboard18 that traditionally, businesses are limited by their geographical reach. The campaign talks about the pain points that sellers face on most e-commerce platforms and how Meesho can help them overcome these hurdles and grow their business.
“Many of these sellers have not sold online and are probably selling digitally for the first time so what matters to them is how easy it is to get their business online. We have tried to simplify the onboarding into a three-step process. Our entire set of guidelines are structured in such a way that makes it very easy for sellers to self-register, upload their catalogue of products and go live. Once that happens they need support so we provide investment of ad credits and account managers who help new sellers,” he explains.
Currently, Meesho claims to have over 4 lakh sellers across categories. Some of the categories that have gained maximum traction on its platform include fashion across men, women and kids, and electronics, home, kitchen and accessories.
Meesho is aiming to build it further by creating more awareness about the platform in smaller towns through its advertising. Its latest campaign will air on major TV networks such as ABP Majha, Thanthi TV, Kolkata TV, Asianet Movies, Colors Kannada and Zee 24 Taas in addition to being amplified across social media channels such as Youtube and Facebook. Each film is shot in Hindi and Tamil (master languages) and further dubbed in seven other regional languages.
Battle for Bharat
As smaller Indian cities and towns are now accounting for bigger volumes of e-commerce sales, e-commerce platforms have been bullish on tapping the potential of this segment.
In January 2022, value e-commerce platform Snapdeal launched its campaign - #BharatKoTaiyaarKartaHaiSnapdeal, targeted at shoppers. Snapdeal draws more than 86% of its orders from outside metro cities, with more than 72% of the orders flowing from buyers living in smaller cities and towns.
The company also said that over 90% of its business is coming from categories like fashion, home and general merchandise and beauty and personal care.
As per a recent RedSeer report commissioned by Snapdeal in August 2021, the number of value shoppers is expected to triple, from approximately 78 million in 2021 to nearly 256 million by 2026.
Naresh Gupta, co-founder and chief strategy officer of Bang In The Middle says that Meesho is entering into the space where Amazon already is, and it can only be good for the retailers across India. “While there have been many brands that have tried to bring local artisans, craft and food to the web, the market is just too big for a single player,” he notes.
With a turnover of $50 billion in 2020, India became the eighth-largest market for e-commerce, trailing France and a position ahead of Canada. According to NASSCOM, despite Covid-19 challenges and disruptions, India's e-commerce market continues to grow at 5%, with expected sales of US$ 56.6 billion in 2021.
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