Social networks around the world have been vying to woo small businesses but have mostly fumbled at it. India’s favorite fashion social network Roposo, however, has managed to achieve what many international tech giants haven’t been able to pull off. Its chat-to-buy feature is set to alter the paradigm of social commerce in India by combining the best of two worlds; over 3 million Indian fashion lovers and more than 10,000 brands and small sellers.
Until now, small businesses closed most of their online transaction on call or phone chats. However, they struggled to use a generic chat platform for business purposes. Roposo not only facilitates the discovery of these products, but now also focuses on the closure of these transactions through the smart chat feature. This unique chat feature also provides an option to attach a picture with the conversation, leaving no stone unturned. Chat to buy is a one-place, smart solution to buying on chat, which enables lesser but more intelligent interactions between buyer and sellers. Further a buyer can browse the seller’s shop even when he is offline.
Mayank Bhangadia, Co-founder and CEO said, “Roposo has been a source of lead generation and engagement for many brands and businesses. The platform is especially popular amongst small-scale sellers who prefer using social media channels to sell their products rather than listing themselves on giant e-commerce sites. Roposo’s versatility as a platform gives it an edge over traditional networking platforms like WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook Messenger. The platform’s innovative features, including in-chat smart cards, ease the communication between sellers and buyers. Most importantly, the chat-to-buy feature will now complete the loop of leads, transactions, and engagement by enabling purchases through the platform itself with just a few clicks. We are certain that this addition to our suite of features will further strengthen the business relationship we share with small sellers across the country”.
The validation of the concept came very early and prominently for Roposo when a strong seller buyer ecosystem emerged. Of a 5000 strong organic smaller businesses community on Roposo, about 82% of the sellers are women, many of whom are homemakers or college students; in an universe of 5 million small sellers. For these women, Roposo empowers them both financially and emotionally – through a strong base of followers, who interact continuously with them, giving them business as well as the confidence to keep up the good work. On an average, an order for a seller is worth Rs. 1200 – 1500.
The chat-to-buy feature is uniquely positioned to cater to the small businesses and an audience which lives and breathes fashion. Visibility to these small sellers is lost on other social networks, where bigger brands with deeper pockets are bidding on the same audience.Both Instagram and Facebook have in the past year announced plans for business tools, which are still in the testing phase in a handful of developed countries. Google Shop, launched in 2012, is still working its way to garner attention from smaller businesses.Roposo has a unique advantage over Facebook and Instagram – While the Facebook marketplace has been launched only in 4 countries, Instagram’s new shoppable tags and ‘shop now’ button have been added only for 20 brands.
Roposo has established itself as the ultimate destination for fashionistas to interact, discover trends and purchase products from thousands of brands. The new ‘Chat to Buy’ button is yet another step in the platform’s endeavour to create a widespread fashion social network that is accessible to everyone. Small and medium-sized retailers are sure to benefit financially from this innovation, and enjoy more ease in building their brand image.