Online grocery delivery platform Grofers has launched a website from which its users can place orders, 3 years after it launched operations and an app to sell groceries on. The website’s interface is similar to that of the app and provides groceries which can be bought from different categories and stores.
The company says that it created a team to launch the website based on feedback from its users that shopping on Grofers was restricted to smartphone users. On the platform, Grofers claims to have over 120,000 products and currently delivers to 17 cities and regions: Agra, Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Chandigarh, Hyderabad, Indore, Jaipur, Kanpur, Kolkata, Lucknow, Mumbai, NCR, Nagpur, Pune, Surat and Vadodara.
The company claims that it will replace products users don’t find satisfying when they’re delivered. Currently, Grofers says that its user base is growing 4x month on month (currently 1 million) and that it has 3 million collective downloads on iOS and Android. The website has a clean interface with product popup details and lets users add by quantity and units. It currently charges a delivery fee of Rs 19 for orders below Rs 500.
Last month, Grofers applied for a Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) following the government’s move of allowing 100% FDI in single brand retailing for the ecommerce sector, giving a boost to sub industry sectors including online grocery startups.
Churn in online grocery delivery segment
The grocery delivery segment in India hasn’t had it easy, Grofers included. In June, the company fired 10% of its work-force citing “general slowdown in activity.” In January, Grofers shut down services in 9 cities. Competitor PepperTap closed operations in February this year despite raising $51 million and pivoted to logistics, Flipkart shut down Nearby, Ola shut down Ola Cafe and Ola Food, AskMeGrocery said it would expand to 80 cities but its future hangs by a thread. Currently, Grofers’ true competitor is BigBasket which raised $150 million 6 months ago.
In November 2015, Grofers had raised $120 million in funding from SoftBank, Russian entrepreneur Yuri Milner, with participation from existing investors Tiger Global and Sequoia Capital. Last year, Grofers acquired B2B logistics service provider Townrush, SpoonJoy and My Green Box.
Other platforms which were app only and launched websites:
– Uber recently launched an app simulator of sorts on web, after being app only since inception.
– Ola launched SMS booking recently after going app only last year.
– Jugnoo launched a website for food and grocery delivery.