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How Flipkart & Amazon enter the festive season

For both brands, Durga Puja to Diwali is the peak season for consumer purchases.

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NEW DELHI: Amidst Covid2019 pandemic, India's biggest e-commerce platforms, Flipkart and Amazon, have tightened their belts in readiness for the festive fervour. Tensions are running high as the companies are looking to outperform each other in the battle of mega sales. Flipkart is set to begin the Big Billion Day sale from 16 October (Flipkart Plus customers will get access to deals 24 hours early), while Amazon will kickstart the Great Indian Festival from 17 October (Amazon Prime members will get access to deals 24 hours early). 

For both e-tailers, Durga Puja to Diwali is like an extended banquet of consumer purchases.

According to experts, online sales are expected to grow at their fastest pace this festive season. It is no secret that consumers, both in metros and non-metro cities, have shifted from physical retail to online modes of shopping as a result of the pandemic. The festive jamboree is expected to generate higher-order volume and value for e-commerce companies and help them multiply their retail sales following the negligible to zero growth in business during the lockdown.

To leverage this promising event, Amazon and Flipkart have launched their marketing campaigns to rope in the masses. However, the advertising approach by both brands for the festive campaign is completely different. 

Like the previous year, Flipkart’s strategy is massively celebrity-driven and focuses on essentials such as product and deals updates. These celebs include Virat Kohli, Amitabh Bachchan, Alia Bhat, Mahesh Babu, Sudeep. The etailer has roped in endorsers from the north and south regions to reach out to its audiences in these geographies. It has also roped in multiple influencers to amplify the sale and launched a teaser campaign to build excitement around the announcement of the sale.

Flipkart group CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy said, “The Big Billion Days stands for a celebration of brands, an assortment of collections never seen before, a spirit of festivity and joy, and a feeling of immense excitement as everyone embarks on their festive season preparations. This festive event continues to focus on Flipkart’s commitment to provide value for consumers, opportunities for growth for MSMEs and sellers, and employment generation through e-commerce. Through strong partnerships with brands and sellers we have tapped into the power of interconnected businesses and technology to bring consumers a wide range of products at great prices at their doorsteps this festive season.”    

Read more news on Flipkart

On the other hand, Amazon has also released ads in multiple languages to show how customers are eagerly waiting for the festive sale. The promos also tout Amazon as a one-stop-shop for all your festive fashion shopping from the comfort of home. The brand has stayed away from big celebrities and is focusing on how Amazon Great Indian Festival is a time for the family to shop together. It has also created multiple stores around the theme of Diwali, Durga Puja and IPL, to build a personalized shopping experience for customers. Amazon has also launched a wedding store for the upcoming nuptials season. The e-commerce platform has incorporated features like voice to quickly narrow users’ search for products, top deals, including Alexa-exclusive deals, or just ask Alexa on their Amazon Shopping app (Android only). 

The brand is promoting its campaign through hashtags such as #NowHappinessHasNoBounds #HarPalFashionale on Instagram and Twitter. 

Both e-commerce giants are keeping their social media feeds buzzing with updates on exclusive deals and offers. As per experts, Amazon has a rationalised budget distribution for the whole year, including non-festive periods, whereas Flipkart does seasonal advertising.

Read more news on Amazon India

This year Amazon and Flipkart have massively expanded their footprint. Flipkart has expanded its kirana onboarding program to include more than 50,000 kiranas, who will in turn make last-mile deliveries to consumers in more than 850 cities. On the other hand, over 20,000 offline retailers, kiranas, and local shops from local shops on Amazon programme are participating for the first time in the shopping festival.  

Amazon India VP Manish Tiwary said, “This year’s ‘Great Indian Festival’ is an opportunity for our sellers and partners to reach millions of customers across the country. Our sellers are excited and expect this to help them in accelerating their business. For our customers, our aim is to help them find everything they need during the festive season and deliver it safely to them.”  

If we look at the trends closely, the ‘Big Billion Days’ and ‘Great Indian Festival’ are not merely sale events but have become synonymous with the respective brand’s legacy. The sales of these two etailers have been growing year-on-year, especially during this period. 

Now, consumers actually refresh their phones for weeks in anticipation for these seasonal sales to buy the products they have long-since added to their wishlists. This consistency by both e-tailers to hold mega sales over the last few years clearly depicts how the event has built a brand's legacy.

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