Aishwarya Ramesh

Flipkart's 'Ideas' feed features content creators, publishers

The e-commerce company's 'Ideas' feed has content - articles, videos, photos - from publishers and influencers, prompting users to shop on its app.

Flipkart's 'Ideas' feed looks a lot like Instagram shopping. Instagram's shopping section is a personalised feed based on the posts of someone that a user follows or has interacted with. 'Ideas' works on a similar concept - with added access to a user's purchase history data. When you tap on a product featured in Instagram's shopping tab, it takes you to a brand's website/app where you can complete the transaction and buy the product. This is where 'Ideas' is different - a user can complete the transaction on the Flipkart app itself. Essentially, by adding this feed to the app's interface, Flipkart has brought content consumption and online shopping under a single app. This creates a sticky interface that a user does not have to exit in order to perform multiple functions. Flipkart, on its app, now hosts videos, the 'Ideas' feed and a gaming section, in addition to its own wallet - SuperCoins.

A statement from Flipkart mentions that a customers' purchase journey travels through three stages - intent, product discovery, and purchase. "Since consumers have a variety of options to choose from, the customer's journey today is fragmented across different platforms and at Flipkart, we believe there is an opportunity for a single destination which offers options for both content and commerce. With the launch of ‘Flipkart Ideas’ on our platform, we're assisting with the customers’ shopping experience by providing them with relevant content and guiding them through their e-commerce purchase journey," read the statement.

On its website, a blog post mentions that Flipkart 'Ideas' will help bring the next 200 million consumers (from Tier II and Tier III cities) online. The brand mentions that these consumers need easy discovery, inspiration and 'post-purchase hand-holding' as they navigate through the e-commerce platform. The feed hosts content from brands and influencers, and will be available under 14 key interest areas, including fashion, health and fitness, gadgets, food and nutrition, home and living, and so on. 'Ideas' will engage consumers through videos, images, GIFs, stories, polls and quizzes.

The statement also mentioned that providing consumers with credible content is an attempt to improve shopping experience. "We've witnessed positive growth and engagement post our launch, with a 4X growth in brands that are using the platform effectively today. We believe that great content, if made available to a wider base of consumers, specially the ones who are new to e-commerce but not necessarily the Internet, can bring them online on a daily basis and help take away any anxiety that they may have towards online shopping," says the brand's statement.

A publisher which regularly uploads content on 'Ideas' is ScoopWhoop. It uploads content snippets that are a minute or two long, with a heavy focus on integrating the product into relatable storylines. Meghana Bhat, chief marketing officer at ScoopWhoop, points out that consumers interact with brands on a daily basis and it made sense to integrate it more deeply into the content. "Our stories aim to be relatable and carry the product message with it," she says.

Meghana Bhat
Meghana Bhat

To illustrate examples of relatable, emotional content, she talks about one where someone has just moved out of their house and has to call their mother for questions. "That situation right there is emotional content in itself because it has so many layers. There's the layer of missing your mother, there's a layer of being unsure of what to do when you're on your own, and so on," says Bhat.

"In our content pieces, the product is important to the storytelling process," she adds. Since the platform hosts content by influencers as well as publishers, she differentiates between the two in their delivery method. "Influencer-led content can be quite informative while we’re trying to make entertainment. We’ve taken our assets - talent and IPs - and turned them into shoppable content for Flipkart," she tells us. Bhat adds that the content that publishers upload on the platform is primarily different because of the duration and delivery of the material.