Agility in E-tailing: How Flipkart is Just Doing It


Agility has special importance in business. The business environment is in a state of constant flux. To remain relevant, counted, up and running, business organizations must be agile to the environment-Internal & External.

E-tailer is another name for online retailer. Continuous technological up-gradations and developments is forcing e-tailers to be more adaptive, flexible, resilient, responsive, versatile & innovative. These are also the characteristics of agility.

Agility @ Flipkart

Flexibility:

To ensure more warehouse storage without incurring additional expenses, Flipkart experimented with the idea of flexible storage. They designed flexible storage which resulted in 50% more storage space without incurring extra expenditure.


Adaptability:

Flipkart and eBay are following mutually beneficial business strategies. Under this, eBay will invest $500 million in the form of equity stake in Flipkart and will sell its eBay.in business to Flipkart. eBay and Flipkart will also explore across the border business opportunities so that eBay’s global products are available to Indian buyers and eBay’s global buyers get unique Indian products through Flipkart.


Responsiveness:

Flipkart is leading the flock in migrating from desktop and mobile site to mobile app only platform. It has moved its customers from website to mobile app. This is aimed at providing better customer experience, as most of the customers are accessing the site through mobile phones. By doing so Flipkart is saving on cost by deploying eased out resources (technology & people) on other platforms.


Versatility:

The introduction of Cash on Delivery (COD) by Flipkart was an effort to encourage mass online buying and ramp up sales.

Flipkart and other e-tailing companies created an impression amongst the buyers that it is cheaper to buy online. This may hold true in pre-GST era, when there was different VAT levied by states, but with GST implemented Flipkart resilience will be tested.


Resilience:

The introduction of Cash on Delivery (COD) by Flipkart was an effort to encourage mass online buying and ramp up sales.

Flipkart and other e-tailing companies created an impression amongst the buyers that it is cheaper to buy online. This may hold true in pre-GST era, when there was different VAT levied by states, but with GST implemented Flipkart resilience will be tested.


Innovativeness:

During festive seasons Flipkart may surprise you by same-day delivery or early delivery– a case of incremental innovativeness. Flipkart decision to do away entirely with websites and sell only through mobile app is disruptive innovation. It could even backfire.

Contributed by: Jitender Sharma, PhD, Associate Professor – School of Retail Management

(Photos Source: pexels.com/photo)

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