Monday, August 29, 2011

Online FMCG / CPG Retailing – it’s challenges and opportunities

Online retailing of Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) / Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) has not been caught up so far, not just in India, but also across the world. It is probably the last big segment / sector that is still largely out of the online commerce ambit and represents the next big challenge.

FMCG’s (grocery / household essentials) share of wallet is not only very high, but it is also very consistent and is rapidly growing over time, and therefore there is a lot of interest in wanting to address this market.

However, there are a number of challenges that traditional e-commerce models face when it comes to FMCG / CPG online retailing. The challenges are not just logistical, but also around the consumers’ buying behavior and service level expectations.

I recently wrote an article on some of the reasons that I believe make the business of FMCG online retailing tough & a few big opportunities that make it exciting.

Read the article here @ iamwire.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Ticketmaster & Facebook for next stage of social commerce

The next stage of social commerce, a mock-up of an arena seat map indicating where a customer's Facebook friends were sitting. 
Live events are inherently social, buying tickets should be, too.      
Starting today, you can see what the fuss was about. In hopes of spurring word-of-mouth marketing to reduce the estimated 40 percent of live event tickets that go unsold, Ticketmaster is launching this enhanced Facebook connectivity.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The integration of the Moments of Truth.

The First Moment of Truth (FMOT), coined by P&G, refers to the few seconds that it takes a consumer to choose a product on a retail shelf – from amongst the wide array of products on display.

The logic of FMOT is indisputable and has prompted brands to re-evaluate the traditional marketing funnel approach (AIDA and it’s various versions), and design their marketing plans based on the FMOT.

I understand FMOT works well in the Modern Retail Formats (MRFs), but it is difficult to see it working seamlessly in traditional neighborhood retailers (in India) where space is limited and the shopping environment is not geared up for a DIY format. This is important as 90% or more of the FMCG sales are still via the traditional retailers.

Recently and based on changes in the consumer’s usage of the Internet for shopping, Google came up with the concept that it called “The Zero Moment of Truth” (ZMOT), which refers to the pre-buying online research that the consumers undertake prior to hitting a store. 

Data made available by the research undertaken by Google, makes it imperative for the CPG / FMCG brands to have a comprehensive strategy to ensure they have a relevant & prominent positioning in the online space. 

Most brands are starting to address the two moments of truths and tend to consider these to two separate silos, which need to be addressed with strategies specific to the silo. 

At AaramShop, our belief is that for the brand marketing to be effective and for it to result into sales the two silos need to be intertwined. That’s the AaramShop offer to FMCG / CPG brands. 

AaramShop brand listing (along with advanced optimization) enables a brand to be “found” by consumers and also enables the brand to leverage itself on social networks to create relevant buzz. The brand could also use integration tools like Aaram Widgets or customized QR codes to further invigorate its social media presence.

AaramShop also enables the consumers to place an order for the CPG / FMCG product immediately – thus bringing the FMOT seamlessly close to the ZMOT. The order, when placed online is fulfilled by the independent neighborhood retailer (AaramShops as we call them). The product / brand is delivered to the consumers doorstep within hours.

It is this seamless integration of the ZMOT with the FMOT that makes AaramShop a unique platform & interesting enough for the FMCG / CPG brands to engage with.