MyGlamm, the newly turned unicorn in cosmetics and personal care space, was undergoing a rough patch until it decided to change its approach from online to omnichannel. It made its products available to the tier-II and tier-III cities traditionally to the mom and pop stores and the chemist shops. By, the festive month in 2020, MyGlamm witnessed green shoots where its sales reached the pre-covid months.
The love for the offline channel is evident in D2C beauty brand Sugar Cosmetics that has a 60 percent retail presence whose 40 percent of sales comes from the digital channels.
Several D2C brands that initially began online have tasted the success of online channels, but to further elevate customer experience the brands are considering a foray into traditional channels.
No matter how technologically advanced we become, offline retail is never going to lose its sheen over time. The experience of first trying and making a purchase is something that Indian consumers are inclined to. In retail, 95 percent of the buying happens through offline formats in India.
In retail, 95 percent of the buying happens through offline formats in India.
D2C Brands going the traditional way
After foraying into traditional retail these D2C brands such as WOW Skin Science, Sugar Cosmetics and Bombay Shaving Company witnessed a high frequency of orders. Below are some of the D2C brands that are planning to sell their products through physical retail.
Peesafe: A female personal care and hygiene brand that was founded in 2013. Cut to February 2021, Peesafe launched its first exclusive stores in 2021 in the cities of Gurugram, Bengaluru, and Ahmedabad; and plans to launch 50 offline stores in the next 12 months. There will be exclusive brand outlets launched through the franchise-owned and franchise-operated model.
Plum: Plum a paraben-free skincare brand has recently opened its physical in one of the malls in Mumbai. The purchasing journey of a customer goes through touchpoints of inquisitiveness, awareness, consideration, trials, and purchase. It is not certain that the processes are followed sequentially, but in the online purchases, some of the steps are skipped. A traditional retail store gives a combined experience across all the touchpoints and the assistance of humans also elevates the experience of buying and consuming the product. Plum has its shelf presence in more than 750 assisted outlets and more than 10,000 unassisted outlets.
Mellora: Where jewellery purchase in India consists of touch, feel, and trials, Mellora a D2C fine jewellery brand first launched as a digital-first brand. Before, purchasing a customer would like to try out designs, check for genuine gems or stones, etc. which makes having an offline storefront necessary. After, tasting success online, it has ambitious plans to open more physical stores. Currently, having six physical experience centres in cities Bengaluru, Delhi/NCR, and Bhopal, it aims to establish 350 experience centres across India. Moreover, it is adopting a hybrid approach where customers can choose products online and place the order offline in any of its experience stores.
The shift to traditional channels from online – A good move
Pivoting to offline retail is necessary for the online-only brands where the touch and feel of the product influence the purchase decision of customers. For better growth and penetration, the brands need to have better visibility physically for a larger set of consumer touchpoints. Face-to-face interaction with the brand in terms of fragrance, textures, look and feel increases customer’s persuasion eventually giving a smooth post-purchase experience.