Even as the likes of Flipkart and Amazon have continued to ride on the digitization boom, it’s now turn for your local neighborhood retailers to go online. Not that they are not leveraging technology already, say accepting UPI for payments or getting orders via WhatsApp.
Kiko Live, a startup with HQs in Mumbai and Indore, is now working to empower local neighborhood retailers by allowing them to build their home delivery businesses. The scope of retailers includes all kinds, ranging from Kirana shops to pharmacies, stationeries to paan shops.
Founded in 2020 by Alok Chawla, Virendra Kumar, and Neeta Rijwani, Kiko Live helps local retailers to get a digital storefront, and manage their home delivery orders. Their customers get quick commerce type 30 minute delivery experience with tracking.
Chawla explained that Kiko Live helps sellers keep track of regular buyers, inventory management, and more. Some of the features will be available very soon on the platform, he added.
He said that the company has about 1,000 verified sellers on the platform, and hopes to have more than 100,000 soon.
The next round of growth, according to Chawla, will come with Kiko Live’s solutions businesses trying to join the ONDC bandwagon.
Kiko Live is currently in the advanced stages of going live as a seller app for the ONDC. So sellers will now also get discovered and get orders from millions of potential customers from ONDC buyer apps, Chawla explained.
Kiko Live intends to become the default app for neighborhood retailers to sell on ONDC, which is expected to go live with multiple categories and across the country very soon.
Chawla added that the ONDC-enabling will soon overtake the current business vertical, which entails discovery of local shops, talk or chat with the retailer, and get product home delivery, and more.
The Open Network for Digital Commerce is already being hailed as a UPI-like revolution for the ecommerce industry. The ONDC essentially allows local commerce across segments, giving a level-playing field for smaller businesses, including SMEs. The network is projected to have 900 million buyers and 1.2 million sellers and $48 billion in gross merchandise value (GMV) in the next five years or so.
“There are currently over 1.25 crore small retailers in India who have no digital presence. Even if we can help 1% of these sellers increase their business by selling on ONDC we are speaking of 1 lakh + sellers,” he added.
To further tap into the ONDC boom, Kiko Live is planning to launch an AI chat-based solution to work on the open network. The AI chat will deliver users the best product suggestions based on their purchase queries from its listed sellers as well as the ONDC network. There’s another chat-based shopping module in the works that will help users send queries to multiple sellers, including those on the ONDC.
The ONDC is hailed as the game-changer for Indian commerce, and platforms like Kiko Live are striving to seize an early mover advantage by offering tailored solutions for Indian retailers. As the ecommerce industry is projected to reach a value of $350 billion by 2030, ample opportunities lie ahead for such companies. Magicpin is a prime example, gaining significant traction recently. This platform enables customers to discover nearby retailers and avail discounts, showcasing the growing demand for localized retail experiences in India.