Ecommerce in India is flourishing like never before. A number of big and small players have jumped into the bandwagon resulting into a cut-throat competition. To improve their authority, more established eCommerce portals are offering some crazy incentives and product prices. Some examples are 100-day return policy, step by step tracking of shipment, same day or next day delivery, interest free EMIs etc.
The most sought facility in Indian eCommerce system is ‘Cash on Delivery’. Out of curiosity, I once enquired Bluedart regarding this facility and they answered, you need to give them a monthly revenue of minimum 2 lakhs in order to avail this facility. This means you must sell a volume of products which generates at least Rs 2 lakhs worth of courier charges only. Insane!! at least for a startup.
On one side, the margin on product is significantly diminishing, while on the other side consumers are getting more and more demanding in terms of facilities. So, the only feasible strategy here seems to be playing on volumes.
Above two paragraphs clearly hints eCommerce is no more a child’s play in India. You really need a heavy investment to jump into this Warfield.
Aren’t there some shortcuts?
Well, one feasible idea seems to be using an already stable platform to sell your products i.e. a eCommerce SAAS platform.
Its not a new concept in India. Some popular Portals like eBay and Tradus are already offering third party vendors to sell goods using their established portals, but there are some new players with more organized and better ecosystems. Instead of selling goods on a third party website, you can now launch your own full fledge e-commerce portals using their already established e-commerce SAAS platforms.
We picked 5 such SAAS platform in order to identify the most complete solution.
5 Indian SAAS E-Commerce Platforms – Side by Side Comparison
Shopnix helps you building and hosting an ecommerce website with an ease. But rest is up to you. You need to purchase a merchant account, arrange for shipping of products yourself etc. Though they will help you out with everything.
In plain words, Shopnix gives you only technical supports like creating an ecommerce portal, hosting it, integration with payment gateways and all.
The free package of shopnix supports only cash on delivery, which is subject to your arrangement with the shipping company. The moment you would like to integrate a payment gateway, you will need to upgrade to a paid plan.
vPlanetcommerce is another eCommerce SAAS provider whose free package seems a good deal as well. Unlimited Products and user login up to a limit of 5 GB Data Transfer is absolutely free. But again, you need to manage the merchant account and shipping logistics yourself. They promise to provide a seamless integration.
39shops goes a step ahead. They have pre-configured payment gateways, you just need to enter your authentication details and you can start accepting payment. So again you need to arrange for your own merchant account and shipping.
Buildabazaar is powered by Infibeam. It lets you use their payment gateway setup (transaction fee applicable) but the shipping logistic has to be managed by you. Though they mention integration with 35 third party courier with which they can connect you to explore a partnership.
Buildabazar collects payment on your behalf and then pays you on 16th and end of every month after deducting their transaction charges.
Martjack claims to offer a complete solution and seems it does. Martjack has exclusive partnership with HDFC bank to provide a pre-integrated payment gateway and with aramex to provide a pre-integrated shipping logistics. What else you need?
While Martjack looks like a complete solution, Buildabazar seems to be a stable solution.