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Nokia store goes online to check dipping market share

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Looking to give a boost to its dwindling market share, Nokia has become the first mobile brand to have an exclusive branded online store in India. Mobile phones till now were sold online through multi-brand stores only. For this, the mobile brand has tied up with Indiatimes.com to launch the online NoiaShop at nokia.indiatimes.com

The online store is targeted at the youth. Viral Oza, Director- Marketing, Nokia India says, “Young Indians are not just spending time online but are comparing and shopping online as well. We see this as a huge opportunity. Today it may be small but we see it becoming a big space.  We want to start engaging with consumers and understanding consumer behavior online. By the time it becomes bigger, we would have established ourselves.”

Viral Oza, Director-Marketing, Nokia, Inda

Nokia inspite of a dwindling market share in the mobile phones category, which is around 40 per cent, hopes to take its share up once again through an exclusive online presence. Called as the NokiaShop, the store  gives consumers the option of availing the facilities of various payment options, including cash on delivery. Apart from this, it also gives the option of paying through EMIs of three or six months.

Meanwhile, Indiatimes is looking to move beyond being a general portal to a potential big e-commerce portal. Till now, it sold multi-brands through its Shopping channel. Beyond this association, Indiatimes has about eight more such relationships in the pipeline and aims to take the number up to around 50. Further, Indiatimes is developing its network of regional warehouses, and is promising to deliver orders within three days in metros and mini-metros.

Gautam Sinha, Director Technology & Business Head-Ecommerce, Indiatimes Shopping says, “There is a growing number of consumers who are trying to adapt e-commerce right now. A bulk of the population is still not there. They have reservations in terms of product, payment, and the originality of the product. By association of two big brands we are hoping to make that easier.”

Despite the growing number of online shoppers, the e-commerce scene of the country is still in its nascent stage. Nokia’s initiative of launching NokiaShop is a step in future but a step well thought of. Indiatimes is hopeful that this association will result in the increase in sale of products in other categories as well. Sinha says, “, If you are able to convince customers because of payment mechanism and trust in the brand to transact once, the rub-off happens in all other categories that you provide.”

With the touch and feel of the products missing online, consumers tend to take up the behaviour of viewing the product online, understand its features and specifications and buy offline. Oza however isn’t perturbed. “We believe that we can change this over a period of time. Our philosophy is to invest in future.”

Sinha meanwhile, finds the opposite true, “For a category like mobile phones, consumers might go offline, touch it there and buy it online. Thus Nokia stores also play an important role in the promoting the online sales.”

The online shop will be promoted through print and radio as well.  Oza elaborates, “We have a large fan base on social media. It is that presence that we’ll be leveraging to offer the link to consumers.”

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Jyotsna Sharma

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