With the promise to help online shoppers navigate the e-commerce ‘jungle', Amazon.com launched junglee.com on Thursday, a site that allows customers to find and shop for products in India through online and offline retail channels.

What the site effectively can do is become the gateway for online shoppers to retailers - online and off - say industry watchers.

Powered by features such as reviews that are popular on Amazon.com and powerful online marketing, this could well emerge the first stop for online shoppers in India, and aid choice of what to buy and where, they add.

Besides amazon.com, shopping channels on Junglee on day one include Homeshop18.com, UniverCell, Hidesign, Gitanjali, The Bombay Store, Fabindia, Bata India, Dabur Uveda, Microsoft India Store and Reebok. Customers cannot buy on Junglee – they can buy online by following the link to the seller's Web site.

They can also find a seller's physical store or place an order by phone.

The company claims that at launch, Junglee.com is a gateway to 1.2 crore products and 14,000 brands, across 25 categories, including mobile phones, cameras, toys and games, baby products, books, music, movies and TV, clothing, jewellery, and kitchen and home products. The site will operate in Beta mode over the ‘next several months'.

In a statement announcing the launch, Mr Amit Agarwal, Vice-President, Amazon.com, said, “We are excited to give customers in India a single online starting point where they can shop for a wide selection of products sold by local and global retailers, and make informed purchasing decisions.”

Inviting retailers

The site is inviting retailers in India to be part of an Amazon Seller Services programme by listing their products on Junglee.com, for free. Retailers need to create an account, upload and refresh their product catalogue.

Junglee will build a product detail page, create advertising, and displays targeted product ads as buying options when customers search or shop for that or a related product on Junglee.com.

gokul.k@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on February 2, 2012)
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