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Development of Merchandising Strategy for an Online Retail Organization

In

99labels Private Limited New Delhi

By Kanmanisekar.K Roll No: 081200 Master of Fashion Management Batch: 2008- 2010 NIFT, Kolkata

Introduction: The E-retailing is the concept of selling of retail goods using electronic media, in particular, the internet. The vocabulary electronic retailing, that used in internet discussions as early as 1995, the term seems an almost in evitable addition to e-mail, e-business and e-commerce, etc. E-retailing is synonymous with business- to- consumer (B2C) transaction model of ecommerce. Although e-retailing is an independent business model with certain specific constituents like; trust model, electronic transaction process, etc, but in reality it is a subset of ecommerce by nature. E-Retailing stores sell online promotion only for goods that can be sold easily online. The online retailing require lots of displays and specification of products to make the viewers have a personal feel of the product and its quality as he gets while physically present in a shop. Essentials of E-Retailing: There are certain essential ingredients for an electronic retailing business to be successful. These essential components are:

Attractive business-to-consumer (B2C) e-commerce portal Right revenue model Penetration of the Internet

E-Catalog It is a database of products with prices and available stock. Shopping Cart The customers select their goodies and fill shopping cart. Finally, as in a real store, at the time of checkout, the system calculates the price to be paid for the products. A payment gateway Customer makes payments through his/her credit card or e-cash. The payment mechanism must be fully secure.

Some online retailing sites in India: E Bay is heading the race of online retailers. In this race it has become very difficult to determine the online retail store that makes the products available at convenient and cheap rates. From this very difficulty has cropped up comparison sites. Comparison is done on the basis of an index which is constructed from the data available from different shopping sites. The bechna.com and the ultop.com are such sites though many more sites are entering this zone. The comparison sites not only help to choose the online sites that would be providing the best deal but also offline as well. Sites like Rediff product search, Compare India.com have constructed the data that is taken from the conventional local retailers. These sites help the customer in finding out the local retail store that will best suit his purpose. Major players in the segment are futurebazaar.com, HomeShop18, E Bay, Indiatimes etc. Problem Identification: The online retailing {e-retailing} process is not an ultimate in the field of retailing methods; it also suffers various drawbacks that are the qualifications of traditional marketing. 1. It has no theatrical ambience which can be the customer. 2. It lacks an emotional shopping experience that the customer can get in a personal shopping store. 3. It being container of intangible merchandise (i.e., virtual display of merchandise) does not provide sensory support to the customer, these the customer cannot hold, small, feel, or try the product. 4. On line customers are reluctant to part with their credit card details on net, fearing they may be misused. It arises security issues. The customers are not yet convinced about the foolproof status of this method, especially in Indian environment. 5. It provides, to a large extent, impersonal services which the Indian customers are not exposed to; they are rather used to the tangible personalized services whichs they miss in online retailing services. 6. It is lacking in family shopping experience which the Indian customers enjoy at the weekends, and particularly during festive seasons and marriage marketing.

Research Objective & Methodology Research objective: The primary objective of the project is Development of Merchandising Strategy for an Online Retail Organization 1. Product analysis 2. Category analysis 3. Size ratio analysis The secondary objectives are 1. To analyze the sales performance of merchandise to find out proper merchandise mix. 2. To analyze the visitors & customer profile.
3. To analyze the competitors profile and their performance.

4. To develop website design & navigation. 5. To develop Product display & communication. Research Methodology: The project is an exploratory type of research which involves the collection of both primary and secondary data. From the primary data listed below the profile of the customer and the visitors will be analyzed. There will be a correlation analysis on sales with product, price and promotion activities and how they reflect in the customer buying behavior. There will be questionnaire part to find the present and the future preferences in terms of product, price and convenience. The sources of primary data includes
1. Registered users of the company website. 2. Sales data of the company. 3. Website analytics.

The sources of secondary data includes 1. Articles & Essays about E-Retail in Internet.
2. Journals & Books about E-retailing.

3. Competitors websites. Organization of the study:

S.No

Topic

Data collection method

Sources Organization sales data

Analyze the Sales performance

Primary

Analyze the Customers & Visitors Profile

Primary

Website analytics

Competitors 3 Competitors Profile Secondary websites & website analytics

Website Design & Navigation

Secondary

Competitors websites Competitors websites

Product Display & Communication

Secondary

Time & Action Plan: December 24 January 31: 1. Understanding the concepts of E-Retailing & the major players through secondary research. 2. Study on organizational setup & functions. February 1 March 31: Data collection: 1. Sales data 2. Registered users data 3. Web analytics data 4. Competitors data April 1 April 14: 1. Preparing and filling up the questionnaire to find out customer buying behavior. April 14 April 30: 1. Interpretation and Analysis of data. May (I week)
1. Preparing the Report. 2. Pre - Submission of Report. 3. Correction of Report based on Feedback

May (II week) 1. Final Submission of report.