Info-tech

Here are 6 platforms enabling offline businesses to go online amid Covid-19 crisis

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on May 13, 2020

The Covid-19 pandemic has created an unprecedented situation around the world- ravaging economies, people, and livelihoods. The lockdown may have helped contain the viral contagion to an extent, but it has disrupted many businesses, especially offline retail stores, and kiranas.

Many start-ups and companies have stepped up and are providing fast online synergies for local Kirana shops, pharmacies, vegetable vendors, and individual businesses, helping them list out inventories, facilitating bargains, and, in some cases, even tying up logistics.

Here are the six platforms taking offline businesses online -

Meesho

Meesho, an Indian-origin social commerce platform, enables small businesses and individuals to start their online stores via social channels such as WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram etc. Meesho is an Indian-origin social commerce platform founded by IIT Delhi graduates Vidit Aatrey and Sanjeev Barnwal in December 2015.

Headquartered in Bengaluru, it was also a part of the first batch of Google Launchpad - Solve for India program.

Shopmatic

Shopmatic is a Singapore-based technology firm that provides e-commerce solutions to small businesses and individual entrepreneurs. Launched in 2014 with an objective to empower millions of aspiring entrepreneurs with a digital footprint, the company recently partnered with Singapore-based retail management solutions company Octopus. The partnership aims to address the gaps that exist for offline businesses in going online in the Asia Pacific region. This mainly caters to retail markets.

CoutLoot

CoutLoot is a platform that claims to help anyone sell products and services online in just 30 seconds. The Social Offline-to-Online (O2O) commerce platform allows seamless interactions between buyers and sellers through its social-media-based model, it mentioned in its official release.

It further stated that it helps aspiring digital sellers from the tier II and tier III market (or any other market in that context) to automatically catalog their products while also providing logistics, payment, and reconciliation support.

Sellers can also share their end-to-end offerings over social media platforms such as WhatsApp, Facebook, etc. with their prospective customers. CoutLoot, an acronym for ‘Couture and Loot’.

Mall91

Mall91 is a social commerce platform for vernacular users across Tier II, III, and IV cities. The first principles-based vernacular social commerce platform combines live videos, social gaming, social content, voice and messaging AI to enable the next 400 million internet users to transact online.

In addition to this, there has been an uptick in terms of merchants/sellers’ signups, primarily selling locally manufactured products, the company mentioned.

Paytm Mall

Paytm Mall has recently partnered with over 10,000 Kirana, small shops, and other businesses for hyperlocal deliveries. It is enabling small businesses by allowing them to sell essentials on Paytm Mall and providing essential logistics support.

The company is aiming to help shops and stores, which have either noticed a sharp decline in footfall or had to abruptly pause operations due to the lockdown. Paytm Mall has started connecting them with their logistics partners so that these small kiranas and stores can deliver essentials to their customers and keep their businesses running.

Instamojo

Bengaluru-based digital payment startup Instamojo has come up with an initiative for physical stores, pharmacies, and logistics companies to help deliver essentials during the lockdown. T

The start-up is offering Priority KYC on its platform for these essential services to go online in less than five minutes. Instamojo has acquired 1,500 merchants on a daily basis, the company mentioned in its official release.

Published on May 13, 2020

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