Omnichannel retail is pitched as the future of ecommerce. Many leading brands have strengthened their omnichannel presence in the last few years. Latest to do so is watch major Titan, which has enabled online bookings and reservations with in-store pickups.
With this, the Chennai-headquartered company joined the league of retail brands and startups that are adopting the hybrid approach. The likes of Nykaa, Zivame, Lenskart, Pepperfry and others started online but have moved to the physical retail market as the market evolved. For Titan, it’s considerably easier to make the journey given its wide network.
The Tata Group company, in its beta phase, had piloted the move at five of its stores in Bengaluru for three months. After the success of the pilot project, the watchmaker will now be introducing the omnichannel strategy nationally in the next 12 months.
“We will roll out it out in our over 500 World of Titan stores, 170 Fastrack, and 75 Helios stores in a phased manner over the next year,” said S Ravi Kant, the CEO of watches and accessories division at Titan.
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The company also offers home delivery option. Through this, a customer can buy a timepiece or other products online and get them delivered at home within three-four hours from the nearest store. Titan has tied up with three logistics companies for last-mile deliveries.
Kant also added that each store cannot carry such a large inventory as the range of watches that Titan offers is huge. The company hopes for a 5% – 6% increase in store-wise sales in the first 12 months of rolling out of the omnichannel strategy. Its watches business recorded a revenue of INR 719 Cr in the second quarter of the current financial year, up 6.4% from last year.
“It is about bringing the synergy between the two channels and giving customers the best of the digital and physical world,” said Krishnan Venkateswaran, chief digital and information officer, Titan.
Is Omnichannel The Future Of Ecommerce?
Retail companies have been strengthening their foothold in the omnichannel segment. In August 2018, Flipkart fashion subsidiary Myntra acquired Mumbai-based Pretr, an end-to-end omnichannel platform for retail. Pretr offers integration of brands’ online and offline segments. Its omnichannel suite, deployed by retailers in India and the Middle East, provides retailers with solutions for Endless Aisle, order management, clienteling, store analytics, and more.
Mumbai-based online furniture and home products marketplace Pepperfry’s ‘Studio Pepperfry’ lets customers consult with interior designers and architects before taking a call on the purchase.
These consultants present at the studio take customers through designs displayed at the studio and the online Pepperfry range. The orders can be placed in store or online with multiple payment options available.
Online lingerie retailer Zivame also offers fitting lounges to help women make better choices. Customers walk into these fitting stores, enter their details on a tab and seek help from fitting consultants at the store. Once customers are sure of the right size, the lounge lets them make online purchase there itself. Basically, the studio compliments online store by providing customers a touch-and-feel experience.