WeddingPitara.com as the name suggests is an exclusive wedding accessories store. You can find below items in one platform within your fingertips.
Bandhanwars, Bridegroom Kalgis, Coin pouches and boxes, Cash boxes, Chowki and Chowki covers, Decorated coconuts, Envelopes, Gift boxes, Gift pouches, Hand clutch and purses, Jwellery boxes, Kaleeris, Kangana(Mouli), Mobile Pouches, Mori(Bride’s crown), Packing baskets, Potlis, Potli’s handbags, Puja thali and thali covers, Return gifts, Ring platters, Saree laces, Saree packing and Turbans. Wow, such a massive range of products, all in one store…
WeddingPitara.com has collaborated with various e-commerce giants like IndyaBags, Paytm, Amazon, Flipkart, Snapdeal, IndiaMart, Olivetheory, Bandbaja.com etc and market its product on these platforms also. This has boosted company’s sales and increased revenue.
How Idea formed:
Shipra, co-founder of weddingpitara.com belongs to City of Taj Mahal and was addicted to online shopping even in 2010. So, when marriage of her younger sister was fixed, Shipra faced issues like time-bound shopping, only one shop available for wedding accessories and that too was located in interior of Agra, and there were no online options for wedding trousseau . Idea had conceptualized in her mind at that time only. Her husband, Himanshu Narayan, also co-founder at WeddingPitara.com encouraged her to go ahead with idea.
She took 3 years to convert her idea into Implementation phase and actually jump into entrepreneurship.
The journey from Ideation to Implementation:
She officially launched her company’s Facebook page in September 2013, used Facebook advertising to reach 1000 likes and then launched her website in February 2014. At that time, her e-commerce site was first of its kind in India and this unfair advantage proved beneficial for her. There were local stores who were advertising through internet, but a full fledged e-commerce site which sold wedding trousseau and related accessories was not present.
Shipra tells that, “When I launched my website with seed fund of Rs 20,000, I was prepared for lack of response. I was surprised when we got good response within one month. After six months of being in market our customer base had established across India and we started selling to repeat customers. Since then there has been no looking back.”
Initial journey was full of bumps and lot of setbacks for Himanshu and Shipra. Shipra told us that, “Our products are delicate in nature which need to be carefully handled. Our initial days were occupied in perfecting the art of packaging, order procurement and timely delivery. Fast courier services were not available in all parts of country, due to which some orders were delivered late. We deployed customer-friendly return and refund policies in such cases. Whenever customers contacted us due to genuine reasons, we usually waived off shipping charges borne by customer along with product cost and took the product back with as less hassle as possible.” Remembering one particular customer, she told that, “One customer had purchased one of the product as a gift for his girlfriend but due to late delivery, she could not receive it. When the person contacted customer service at weddingpitara.com, we refunded his total amount and also gave him some gift vouchers. He was so pleased with our service that he became our loyal customer and has done publicity both online as well as word of mouth.”
Scaling the performance is another issue faced by weddingpitara.com co-founders. Sometimes number of orders are high, at that time ensuring good quality of products along with timely delivery is tough to achieve.
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High Time in Business:
Shipra tells an incident in early 2015, she received call from designer Manish Malhotra’s assistant, just before Lakme Fashion Week, bridal collection. They asked for some sample designs of customised Turbans(head wear of Bridegroom) within one day time period, which were to be used in LKW. Shipra’s designs were not selected in the end, but this call was motivation booster and gave lot of learning.
How Demonetization has affected the business:
Like all e-commerce websites, weddingpitara.com’s business has also been affected by demonetization move. Sales have reduced as much as five times, since November 8, 2016. According to Shipra, “Our products such as Ring Platter, are counted as luxury items by many people. Almost 90% orders were cash on delivery based, so when there was cash shortage, business was affected.” As cash supply is gradually increasing in market, she feels that business will come to its usual sales, but this time period was eye opener. They are now looking for new opportunities in order to sustain the business.
They have started catering to bulk orders pan India as well as Internationally. They are also toying with idea of customizing products as per customers demands. Shipra has recently delivered contract of wedding trousseau packing, where she matched materials, packaging, potlis, envelopes, platter all in theme. She hopes to get similar offers in future and enter in this segment with big bang.