Shreyas Kulkarni

Flipkart touts superior packaging in new grocery ad…

… As it announces expansion of its grocery services to 50-plus cities across India.

It’s not every day that you see a grieving egg strike up a conversation with a bottle of jam inside the refrigerator. The thought is not only funny, but also absurd. Well, it has come true in a spot by Walmart-owned Flipkart for its grocery offering.

More than the ad’s protagonists, it’s the discussion the two have that caught our eye. ‘Andalaal’ appears inconsolable and reveals to the jam bottle that his ‘chacha’ slipped from the overfilled grocery bag and… Only for the selfish jam bottle to boast that he doesn’t travel in a grocery bag anymore. Instead, he travels in a Flipkart grocery bag that comes with added safety, along with savings.

The jam bottle makes two interesting points towards the end. One, it talks about the box it travels in versus the regular grocery bag that was the cause of the chacha’s slip.

Recently, we reported that the e-commerce giant (Flipkart) was “pilot testing ‘no package shipping’ (or package-less shipping) and ‘e-commerce ready packaging’ for certain categories.”

Mahesh Pratap Singh, head sustainability, Flipkart, told afaqs!, “The packaging at Flipkart has been a pretty holistic conversation as we are looking at every aspect of reducing, recycling and reusing (‘3 Rs’) any waste material, including packaging.”

It remains to be seen how Flipkart incorporates these principles into grocery packaging.

The second interesting point that the jam bottle makes is about savings. Yes, most e-commerce players offer some form of a discount on a purchase. In this case, Flipkart pushed the “Triple Power Savings”, where it claims that you can save up to Rs 20,000. This means up to 50 per cent savings on the bill, plus 10 per cent savings with a bank offer, plus 7.5 per cent with a grocery pass.

Yesterday (March 2), Flipkart announced that it had expanded its grocery services to 50-plus cities through its pan-India marketplace. The expansion will provide Flipkart users in seven metro cities and 40-plus neighbouring cities access to high-quality grocery products, the best savings and offers, quick deliveries and the most seamless grocery shopping experience, said a press release.

Manish Kumar, senior vice president - grocery, general merchandise and furniture, Flipkart, said, “Grocery continues to be one of the fastest-growing categories, with the increase in demand for quality food and household supplies from the users. In line with this, we have invested in scaling up our grocery operations across the country and strengthening ecosystem partnerships. This will ensure a seamless grocery shopping experience through an expansive product selection, robust supply chain and smooth in-app experience for the consumers.”

“We have witnessed increased demand for groceries from Tier-II cities in the past year, fuelled by customers increasing preference for contactless shopping, from the comforts of their homes. It is a trend that, we think, will continue and set the course of e-grocery space in India.”

As per a RedSeer Consulting report, more than 50 per cent (close to $570 billion) grocery retail space in India is addressable by e-grocery platforms. Of this, value-first households account for a significant 61 per cent portion, with metro and Tier-I markets covering more than 40 per cent of this opportunity.

Buoyed by contactless delivery of genuine FMCG products, and high-quality food and other perishable items, more people are ordering groceries online. In its earnings calls on February 16, FMCG giant Nestle revealed a 111 per cent growth in e-commerce sales. E-commerce players such as BigBasket, Amazon India, and Flipkart were responsible for 3.7 per cent of domestic sales.

E-grocery will be the focus of most, if not all, e-commerce players this year.