Bangalore-based AeNwis e-Systems has announced the launch of ‘open2save‘, an online venture for the retail industry.
open2save is apparently India’s largest aggregator of all deals and discounts available in the retail market.
With this, consumers can log on to the site and start using the service to get the best deals in their city.
The service has been launched in Bangalore, Mumbai and Pune. open2save already has one of the largest and most comprehensive collections of best deals for consumers in Bangalore, Mumbai and Pune. This service is likely to be launched in other major cities very soon, and aims to be present in at least 20 cities by the end of the year.
So in a sense, open2save aggregates major offline retailers to give discounts to their customers – the customers get a reference number and this can ultimately be used to obtain the discount at the on ground store.
With respect to online shopping portals, a separate gateway is created for open2save customers.
It seems like a workable model for sure. The tie ups which can result in real benefits to the consumer will ensure that consumers throng to the site once word of mouth sets in. So it basically gives consumers the freedom to browse and search through items as well and then effectively apparently gives them better deals.
A word of caution though, I haven’t really checked if the deals being given by open2save are the same deals being given by retailers individually as well. So effectively, if the deals being given by the retailers are the SAME, then there is no real benefit for the consumer and the portal becomes a gimmick. Consumers will thus just go to the shop and buy what they feel like without caring about open2save in any way.
Another problem that I noted was that the portal does not pick up my IP and automatically only show me deals based in my city. If that had done it would have been great. The portal does allow me to set my own preferences but I would have preferred it if I was able to set preferences related to my geographic area within the city so that if I set my preference as Worli in Mumbai, I don’t get deals based on Goregaon.
This seems to be the anti thesis to the Amazon model. There is no delivery. Delivery based models have traditionally failed in India because not too many people have been able to innovate with payment channels and also delivery systems are quite unreliable – especially in smaller towns and rural India. Once Open2Save goes beyond 3 cities to 20 cities, if they had pursued an Amazon like model, delivery would have become a problem.
They can however learn a few things from Amazon – for example, they can show consumers related items and reviews and ratings etc.