Dogspot.in, which started out in 2007 as a portal offering a content and networking platform for dog owners and lovers, has now ventured into e-commerce, with an online pet shop that offers products including dog food, puppy care, collars and leashes, toys, grooming and training products, among others. The site offers free shipping as well as a cash on delivery payment option and delivers across India.
Rana Atheya (formerly with Ibibo), who founded the site with ShaleshVisen and Gaurav Malik, informed MediaNama that post its launch in July, the site receives about 7.4 orders in a day on an average, with the average ticket size being Rs 1374, and monthly revenues of Rs 3 lakh to Rs 4 lakh. In terms of the number of orders, Delhi/NCR is the leading city, followed by Mumbai and Hyderabad.
– Product Inventory: Atheya informs that the company has invested majorly in product inventory and around 70& to 80% of the products are shipped from its local warehouse in NCR. He says that since pet products are way to specialised, building a supply chain is an issue. So very few products mainly consumables are some times sourced through other vendors. The site offers more than 20 local and international brands. According to Atheya, the site’s replacement policies are not rigid and before shipping products, the dog’s age and breed are reconfirmed.
– Logistics: The company has tied up with Aramex for shipping across India. At the moment it offers free shipping irrespective of the order value. It offers a cash on delivery payment option for all major cities. Update: Atheya informs that the company also has a tie-up with DelhiVery and Bluedart. While DelhiVery looks after COD and Prepaid deliveries in Delhi/NCR, BlueDart covers prepaid deliveries across India.
– Marketing Tie-ups: Dogspot powers the pet shop section of Tradus.in, Ibibo’s e-commerce website. It is also in talks with deals sites such as SnapDeal, Dealsforyou and TimesDeals to offer deals on dog products.
– Promotion: Besides online promotions through organic and inorganic ads, SEO and SEM, Dogspot also leverages offline events. For instance it offers discount coupons at its kiosks at dog shows.
– Tie-ups with vets & trainers: According to Atheya, most veterinary doctors also run pet shops , and this is one reason which prevents them from promoting a venture which in a way competes with them. However, there are plans to offer referral programs with dog trainers. There are also plans to rope in US and Australian companies to offer training content and certifications to trainers. “It all depends on the growth that the venture achieves,” mentions Atheya. “At the current rate, it will take another 9-10 months to offer loyalty and referral programs.”
– Funding: The venture is boot strapped at the moment but Atheya is looking forward to raise around Rs 10 lakh from family and friends. He plans to approach VCs once the site crosses a target of around 50 orders a day.