Craftsvilla is an online web store selling handcrafted and green crafted products. Craftsvilla’s vision is to create a leading Indian global online brand in handicraft space which showcases true colours of Indian culture and are embraced by people of all ages, religion and regions. Craftsvilla is dedicated to providing customers with high quality genuine handcrafted products directly from its base and provide fair wages to the artisans. Craftsvilla designs, produces, markets and sells own products apart from selling other premium brands.
Craftsvilla has a tag line. “ The Marketplace to discover India”,this tag line goes perfectly with the site, because it has huge range of Indian products & almost all the products are made keeping in mind the Indian craft & culture. The products give traditional classical touch, emphasizing on ancient designs & looks.The products are categorized into different segments like Jewellery, Handbags, Home Décor, Clothing, Food & Health, and Footwear etc., each further divided into sub segments
Its Journey From Strating To Become A Brand Name In Indian E-commerce:
Incorporated in 2011, Craftsvilla.com is a niche marketplace that sells Handmade, Vintage, Ethnic, Organic and Natural products from India. In Oct 2011, they raised undisclosed amount of seed funding from Nexus Venture Partners and Lightspeed Venture Partners.
In 2 years time, this niche marketplace has turned profitable. They reported a PAT profitability of 1.2% on their 2nd quarter 2013 financial results.
They close GMV (Gross merchandise volume) of close to Rs. 1.2 Cr in that quarter and they are growing at 10-15% month on month currently. They hope to clock overall GMV of 8-10 Cr in year 2013-2014 and targeting close to 25 Cr in this year 2014-2015. They plan to achieve 250-300 Cr GMV in next five years at PAT profitability of 18-20% which should give them healthy valuation of Rs. 1500-2000Cr in next five years.
They have 100% organic traffic which means we do not do any paid digital advertising. This gives them capital efficiency on the marketing front and therefore it has enabled us to become PAT profitable. They use mostly social media, blogs, traffic through search and affiliate channels. About 90% of their customers are women which enables them to do more focused PR marketing.
Their logistics are handled by the sellers themselves and they are free to choose any courier of their choice as long as products are delivered on time and in right condition. They are an open marketplace unlike others which are more managed marketplaces.
Their philosophy is that frictionless marketplaces, which are self-serve platforms, would only be profitable in India. Managed marketplaces with centralized logistics and cumbersome seller on boarding processes are high touch which requires more manpower and therefore can never be profitable and sustainable in the long run.
They do not spend a dime on acquiring their sellers. Most of their sellers are women and are coming on Craftsvilla.com through word of mouth channels. They do not allow sellers who sell non-Indian and branded products. They only allow sellers who are selling Indian theme products.
Craftsvilla has announced a $ 19 Million (Rs 110 Cr) round led by Sequoia Capital and supported by existing investors Light speed and Nexus and new investor Global Founders Capital. This comes as a shot in the arm for the company that is building India’s largest marketplace for ethnic apparel and products.
Now Craftsvilla.com, looks like lean, mean, slow & steady growth with frugal marketing spend is the right way to go.
Craftvilla’s Marketing Strategy And Campaigns:
Ecommerce marketplace leader for Indian products, Craftsvilla.com, claims to be growing with zero paid advertising. Here they list their digital marketing strategy with minimal marketing spend.
In online e-commerce world, you would rarely hear businesses which are profitable and growing with no digital paid advertising costs. For most online e-commerce giants, marketing cost is substantial part of their overall cost, sometimes even reaching more than 50%. In such a cash burning industry, there is one online marketplace in India, Craftsvilla.com, which claims to be growing with zero digital paid advertising. Here are their five tips on how to grow an online business with 100% organic traffic:
- Content Marketing: the content around unique products including description and story behind those products, can be used very effectively to drive large traffic to the webstore. The long tail nature of your products can ensure you get higher visibility and ranking on search engines for long tail searches which are less competitive. Craftsvilla.com has more than 300,000+ products online like sarees, jewellery and salwar kameez which are unique and are across various categories. This helps Craftsvilla.com to get high keyword rankings on long tail and therefore relevant search traffic at zero cost.
- Referral Marketing: Referral and viral marketing is the most relevant marketing technique in an online world where everyone is connected and constantly buzzing about something or the other. Using unique referral models based on either commission or coupons can be used to attract customers which come from strong word of mouth network and therefore are more likely to buy higher ticket items or convert quickly. Craftsvilla.com is using a unique “Agent” model to do referral marketing whereby agents market products in their neighbourhood, friends and family network or office on a sale commission model.
- Emotional Marketing: Emotional marketing works well if there is a strong social impact connect with the products or the products have high aspirational value due to relation with either Bollywood celebrities or some brands. Craftsvilla.com products create livelihood for base of the pyramid sellers who are mostly artisans and also women who are otherwise unemployed and/or can only work from home. Given most of Craftsvilla.com customers are women, this emotional connect helps in the sale of the products on Craftsvilla.com
- Affiliate Marketing: Using other websites as affiliate channels is a proven model online for scaling at lower cost. Craftsvilla.com uses multiple affiliate channels to reach customers who are familiar with affiliates and are more open to shopping online on stores which are recommended by the affiliates.
- Social Marketing: Using social media like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc is best way to drive traffic which is relevant and online. Craftsvilla.com has more than 550,000+ Facebook fans and are present on more than 100+ social media platforms.
These are the five strategy on how to grow online without spending a lot of money. Craftsvilla.com is a rare gem in the online industry in India and is on the path to become the most profitable online ecommerce company in the world.
Campaign: “Miss Ethnic 2015”
Craftsvilla has come on board as the first official client for cinema advertising, running a week-long campaign across all PVR & Inox screens nationally to promote their ‘World Ethnic Day’
Radio: An Advertising Portal
Their advertising requirement was to increase the number of products to more than one Lakh on their web store within 12 months with more than 1,000 orders per day. They wanted the organization to be portrayed as completely women centric with more female suppliers, artisans and buyers. The objective was to create awareness, help suppliers make money and assist buyers to get reasonably priced products. For Craftsvilla, the media vehicles were not limited to only online media. The media platforms included Radio which ensures a more personal touch to the messages delivered. The aim was to get maximum visibility all-round the female target audience as well as the draw attention of prospective artisan vendors. At the same time they intended to establish direct transactional relations with the customers as it helps today’s trend-setting females keep up with the latest ethnic trends without burning a hole in their pocket.
Highlighting the USP:
The most essential part of the entire campaign planning was to highlight the Unique Selling Proposition of the Brand, which were as follows:
1) Mixing Indian Cultural Diversity with Technology: India is a land with amazing diversity and no attempt has been made until now to integrate this diversity on a single online or digital platform. Craftsvilla.com is the pioneer in the field of combining culture and the Internet. Their products are handmade by individual designers, artisans and sellers across India and sold online,
2) E-commerce with a Social angle: They have a global customer base which has been acquired with the help of a tech-enabled platform. There is no space constraint online so they can showcase millions of products in one e-shop only for women and by women. They intend to portray that they are in support of women empowerment in the sense of enabling women artisans and
3) Strong supply chain and economical products: They work closely with more than 100 vendors and over 1000 artisans across India. Customers get all the products directly from its creators, eliminating unnecessary middlemen expenses which ensures reasonable pricing.
India is still an evolving country when it comes to the e-commerce space and many people continue to be sceptical about making online transactions. Convincing consumers to shell out money, especially online is a hard task hence we tried doing it through radio. On the business side, another challenge was how they can reach out to local Indian customers. Many of their customers are women, so they can easily collaborated through radio to enable reach in a more cost-effective way.
Presence on Social Media:
Performed Entire Social Media & SEO Campaign for Craftsvilla. Ranking for 2000+ Keywords & Driving Traffic 1,00,000 + Visitors Per Month resulting in page views 10,0000 A Month. Created Huge Fans base on Facebook.
6/2015: 3,919 Twitter Followers
3/2015: 4,255,717 Facebook Likes
Image Credits: Craftsvilla, track.in, Facebook, Twitter