Flipkart, India’s leading e-commerce marketplace, has revamped its seller onboarding process to ease and improve the first-time e-commerce experience for India’s small businesses. To ensure easy access, the company has also stationed 13 regional teams across the country to help onboard sellers in person, by meeting with them at their premises. These changes to the onboarding process will make it easier for small sellers, who may not have prior digital expertise, to list their products on the platform and access Flipkart’s pan-India base of over 150 million customers.
Currently e-commerce accounts for less than 3% of India’s overall retail industry, with tremendous scope for growth over the coming decade. Government estimates suggest there are roughly 60 million MSMEs in India, many of whom are restricted to their local markets due to difficulties in accessing resources. This revamp to the onboarding process reiterates Flipkart’s commitment to bringing more small sellers from across the country into the e-commerce fold.
Flipkart is focusing on building initiatives that nurture sellers, beginning with onboarding. The company also helps sellers with growing their businesses, through initiatives like the CA ecosystem that helps with financial and taxation processes and ‘Growth Capital’, which enables seller financing. Flipkart has also added regional teams in various Tier II and beyond cities to help sellers sign onto the platform. These regional teams, based in cities such as Lucknow, Coimbatore, and Jaipur, cater to sellers in 4300 plus pin codes.
The aim of Flipkart’s efforts on the onboarding front is to maintain its high-quality standards, while enhancing the experience and enabling access to the market for small businesses. This will be underpinned by Flipkart’s strengths in order fulfillment, first-mile and last-mile logistics, and swift and convenient payment mechanisms.
“As a platform, we are committed to broadening market access for sellers and helping them reach millions of customers all over the country. By revamping our onboarding process and simplifying the number of steps, we are making it easier for any seller, no matter the size, to list on our platform and get started from day one. As a homegrown company, we know that the future of e-commerce lies in bringing more MSMEs and smaller businesses online, which in turn will generate employment and investment, and will meaningfully contribute toward the country’s socio-economic development,” said Nishant Gupta, Head of Flipkart’s Marketplace business.
Mr. Singh of Vani Traders, Delhi, had this to say, “I got to know about the Flipkart marketplace from one of my friends, who already had a business on the platform. I decided to give it a try and was able to register myself in the Home Appliances category with no hassle. The process was very smooth and easy, I did not have to reach out to the Flipkart team at all.”
Abdul Basit had a similar experience when listing in the Mobile Accessories category. Not having had experience with running a business, before he decided to start listing products on Flipkart after he heard of a friend’s positive experience with the platform. He said, “The process was quite easy, and the directions were to the point, which helped me manage the listings effectively.”
Some of the key changes that Flipkart has implemented include:
- A detailed description about each step to make sure they know exactly what is required
- Reducing required documentation down to GST number, cancelled cheque, and a signature
- A single step verification with the GST number, with additional support from the Seller Onboarding team so sellers do not need to wait for verification
- Improved dashboard interface which guides sellers on the progress of their profile completion, pin code serviceability, etc.