Flipkart is at the time of writing the biggest e-commerce website in India and a major player worldwide. While it dwells heavily on the Indian business, the company has the resources and know-how to expand beyond borders. The online retailer has recently raised $1 billion in capital and its value has more than doubled from $3 billion. Tiger Global, Accel Partners, GIC and Naspers are their biggest investors.
Key facts about Flipkart
- Flipkart will be celebrating one year of existence in 2017, as it was founded in 2007.
- The founding members of the e-commerce websites are Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal, but they are not related.
- Flipkart grew rapidly from a tiny business, mostly thanks to its popularity among Indian buyers and sellers.
- An important milestone was hit in 2009 when it raised $10 million and more funding followed in 2010 and 2012.
- Flipkart sells everything from home appliances and gadgets to footwear, fashion items and books.
How does Flipkart work?
Flipkart was initially available only to those who would sign up for an account on desktop computers. With the advent of mobile devices and the popularity of smartphones and tablets, a mobile app was developed. Those who want to sell and buy products here are supposed to sign up for an account using any device. A username and password is all it takes to become a client and there is no fee to pay.
Even those who don’t have an account can browse the selection of items, but only customers can place orders. Flipkart used to offer the possibility of paying with credit cards, but relied heavily on the cash on delivery option. Almost a decade later, there are still many users who prefer this system, as they consider it risk-free. The buyer’s protection mitigates the risks and encourages users to pay by card or e-wallets.
There is always the possibility of using a hybrid solution, such as paying by card on delivery. Flipkart is all about flexibility and is willing to make various changes to accommodate users. Order confirmation is an important step when shopping here and clients can track their product. All they need to do is to go over the content in the “My Orders page” to track the shipping status of any item. Updates are also provided by email and telephone, so customers are always in the loop.
Flipkart would normally package items in its brown paper cartons. This applies to regular products, but users can make special requests. When they buy or sell fragile products that need additional protection, bubble wrapping is provided. This stuff does a fine job at protecting items, but buyers are also entitled to send them back if damaged.
The Flipkart mobile experience
Flipkart was always quick to embrace the latest technologies and did the same for mobile shopping. Immediately after smartphones and tablets started to be used worldwide, they released the mobile app. Its compatibility with all operating systems made it popular among Apple, Android and Windows phone users. The same convenient shopping experience is available on desktop computers, laptops and mobile.
The Flipkart mobile app proved its power in the big billion sale of 2014 and once again a year later. The website was changed and the functionality of the application improved in 2015 after the acquisition of Appiterate. The innovative mobile marketing startup further improved the mobile experience of those who shop here. Steps forward have been made ever since, in an attempt to keep the company head and shoulders above competitors. OLX, Snapdeal and Shopee all come strongly from behind.
What are others saying about Flipkart?
Flipkart reviews are as diverse as the community of buyers and sellers. Most comments are in regard to the prices and items available for sale. Obviously, everyone likes the fact that the e-commerce store is free and easily accessible on mobile devices. Savvy users who compare them with OLX, Snapdeal and Shopee highlight the fact that they’ve got a dominant position in India. They also notice the rapid growth and the fact that they’ve attracted big investors last year and in 2017.
There were a couple of less than stellar reviews criticizing their big billion sale of 2014. On the other hand, the number of happy shoppers that found it worthwhile to write a review one year later is significantly higher. Many customers and particularly women go out of their way to express their appreciation for the cool gift wrapping option. Those who love sending presents will surely like the fact that Flipkart knows how to wrap gifts. You can even send a personalized message on the wrapper.
Far more important for those who buy and sell products routinely is the fact that packaging is reliable and safe. The speed at which transactions are performed is also noted by many Flipkart reviews. Users are still split between those who have switched completely to credit cards and e-wallets and those who still pay on delivery. At the same time, everyone appreciated the fact that you’ve got the option of choosing.
My rating of Flipkart
Flipkart is indeed the biggest e-commerce store in India, but that wasn’t the thing that swayed me to sign up. I was more impressed by the quality of their website, the mobile friendly approach and professional customer support. After using the service a couple of times, I can say that they are highly predictable smooth and straightforward. In this line of work you don’t need surprises, but predictable results.
I would recommend Flipkart to fellow shoppers, especially if they want to send gifts to those dear to them. Items should arrive on destination on time and unspoiled and you won’t be charged a sign up or handling fee. Their spotless track record and significant investments made recently indicate their commitment to maintain the highest standards. For these arguments alone Flipkart deserves a review score of 8.5 out of 10.