The excitement that I had when I used the Big Basket service first time, couple of months ago is all vanished now and hence this Blog …When I first came to know about Big Basket through one of my colleagues I am excited as well as sceptical about the whole business of ordering grocery over web in Indian Context. Nevertheless I decided to give a try to see how good their service is. When I made my first purchase in Big Basket site, being a person in IT space, I am pleasantly surprised by many of these interesting features that made a positive impact on customer experience.
- Nicely organized product catalogues right from fruits & vegetables to Meat section
- A well performing website without any delay / latency in accessing any of the pages
- Quicker search results with a real time list shown right at the bottom of the search box
- A facility to do a quick add of the listed items to the shopping cart
- Convenience of getting it delivered in one of the 4/5 available time slots
- And more important acceptance of food vouchers / payment on delivery option
In net all it took is not more than 5 minutes to build my shopping list and place an order against going to the nearby convenience store to purchase these groceries ….
The above is all on my positive experience in placing an order and on I am equally delighted by the prompt delivery at the opted time slots, well mannered service personal, neatly packed groceries delivered without damages, acceptance to take back defective items and payment on delivery option
Now you may wonder whether there is a typo in the title of the blog article . Shouldn’t it be “Why I started using Big Basket” instead of “Why I stopped using Big Basket?” Not at all, the title is perfectly fine and would let you know why
First and foremost all the excitement of ordering groceries over web got vanished after my third order. I don’t know why but it just happened. I am not sure what Big Basket can do all about to solve this. May be to some extent they could have mitigated it by engaging with me in an interactive manner continuously. They know a lot about me. My profile information is there, my frequent shopping items are known, locality is shared and may be lot more info in my interactions with the website. But I hardly received any communication. Probably an engaging dialogue with me as a customer on basis of the above information via newsletters, emails, feedbacks and so on sharing some meaningful content / offers / activities etc could have retained my excitement in using the service. A company which does a fantastic job on that front is Club Mahindra ….
The next biggest issue is out of 10 items I intend to purchase in the website I miss at least 3. I am sure that I am not looking for anything crazy. It is as common as fresh fish of my choice, fruits / vegetable of my choice etc. The issue with this is ultimately I don’t have any other option than going to the nearby shop to buy these missing items which doesn’t make the whole experience interesting. It takes out the excitement of ordering everything from web….Also if I have to do that why I have to order via web and wait for one day to get delivered. I can very much go and get everything that I require immediately from the nearby store.
So I see the depth of product catalogue is not quiet comprehensive and it will definitely puts you off from using the service. Interestingly before you place the order there is also a box which asks for information on whether are there any items that you are unable to order. Unfortunately though I have shared things that I miss regularly, I don’t see them made available in my next interaction after few days. In addition to it I am not sure whether they have technology to monitor the search results that doesn’t retrieve any items, track commonly used search phrases, track people don’t add any items to the cart after performing a search etc to actively expand their product portfolio to understand and keep in stock items the customers are looking for.
The other issue I felt was, though they made significant first step in proving multiple slots in a day to deliver the order, I don’t find an option to get my orders placed in the evening get delivered the next day morning time slot. Most of the times at the best I can get that delivered only on the next day evening. This doesn’t help me in ordering some of the quick grocery replenishments that I am looking for my next day’s use. I am sure this requires over night operations as well an expanded delivery capacity in the morning slot but ultimately that is what required to make some of the customers like me see a value in this service
Finally, I am sure there is benefit in cutting down their cost by not having any physical store but I never see the benefits in-turn passed on to the customers. Most of the times the offers in the site are not useful and they are never personalized to me as customer. I know any e-commerce website has to reach the scale to balance out the cost of customer acquisition against the life time value they get derived from customers but to achieve it they have to ensure they make some compelling offers available in the store on some of the commonly purchased items by customers but unfortunately I don’t find any of their offers / discounted products interesting.
Similarly the minimal order size of Rs 1000 to delivery it without shipping charges is annoying. I can understand they can’t completely do away with it but they should bring it down to as low as Rs 250 as many doesn’t prefer to order the vegetables / fish / meat etc. in bulk and refrigerate it for the week’s use.
On the whole though as a customer I really appreciate many factors like a well performing website, superb logistics, good quality of goods delivered and excellent customer service, on a long run to make me as a loyal customer, I believe they have to implement some of the above compelling suggestions …
I am sure this holds good for other e-retailers too and many are not even up to the mark of Big Basket. Good luck Big Basket …
Senior Director, CRMIT
Originally Published on Venky’s Blog