Flipkart, in a bid to become number one in the online retail shopping, has launched a new look website termed as ‘web-app’. The feature has been rolled keeping in mind users’ shopping patterns.
This move aims to tap into a multi-platform user experience where one shifts from the app to the website in the process of finalising the purchase.
The new web-app claims to combine the speed of a mobile app with the comprehensive experience of desktop shopping. According to Flipkart officials, the web-app would lead to an increase in the number of sales of items like refrigerators, mobiles, laptops, furniture, and other large appliances because they require an ample amount of decision making time from the user’s end.
Surojit Chatterjee, senior VP of product at Flipkart said, “There is no desktop-only or mobile-only shopper. They keep moving between the two platforms. There is a direct connection between speed, usability and conversion.”
According to the data given by Flipkart, the new web interface loads 30% faster and uses 38% less data. The 14 member team behind the web-app surveyed 500 people and took seven weeks to code the new interface.
The platform has been built on mobile web infrastructure which will enable access to Flipkart’s website using a lesser amount of Internet bandwidth and data. “We have moved from website to a web-app and for the first time an ecommerce website has been built over mobile infrastructure,” said Suvonil Chatterjee, Chief Design Officer at Flipkart.
The web-app includes new features like compare buttons, availability, top product features, histogram price filters and color coded rating reviews. The first fold of the product now includes a ‘list-view’ of the features like its highlights, services, affordability mechanisms, all in one place, enabling a seamless shopping experience.
A source close to the development said that post the launch the decision- making time for its users has already decreased by 30%. Flipkart users will soon be able to visit their browsing history even without Internet connectivity as well.
Where last year Flipkart worked towards an app-only strategy, it has now transferred its attention to the web. In August 2016, the team introduced two new features called ‘Fliptech’ and ‘Hobbyhub’, also aimed towards a more integrated user experience.
With poor Internet connectivity and dearth of storage space in the majority of smartphones available in the market, Flipkart seems to be making up for last year’s decision to shut down its mobile website by launching a user-friendly web platform this time. This launch on Flipkart’s part is also aimed at getting a step ahead of Amazon India which had become the most visited online commerce desktop and mobile website of 2015 according to a web data.
Flipkart generates 30% of its total sale from desktop orders and has now aimed at increasing this number further. This step is important for the ecommerce biggie because the orders generated from desktop usually are of a high valuation. A forecast by AT Kearney and Google predicts that desktop will remain crucial for driving sales of high value merchandise.
Flipkart re-launched its mobile website ‘Mobile Lite’ in November 2015. The website was rolled out to bring together the mobile app’s experience to user’s phone browser. Flipkart’s fashion arm Myntra also ditched its app-only strategy and re-launched its desktop site in June 2016.
After hurriedly acquiring Jabong in July, Flipkart recently set up shop on the US soil by opening an office in the Bay area. With Flipkart’s valuation seeing a downfall from last year, these developments should facilitate the ecommerce portal to gain an edge over competitors which include Amazon India, Infibeam and Paytm among others.