As logistics continues to be a challenge to major ecommerce players, a tiny startup in Bangalore is promising intra city delivery in 3 hours. Zopnow, the grocery retailer has managed the feat. The online store, facilitates delivery of almost 95% orders within three hours!
How does it do it? “So far we have invested major chunk of investment in warehousing technology and it empowers us to be efficient in serving our consumers,” said Mukesh Singh, co-founder ZopNow.
Zopnow has started 3 hour delivery promise across 4 slots in a day, for instance – If you place an order at 11:55 AM, you can select 12 PM to 3 PM delivery slot. The order will be delivered between the time specified in the delivery slot. You will get an email/SMS once the order is dispatched from the warehouse and you can track the order in real time using its real time tracking interface.
To enable fast delivery, the Times Group funded company has deployed GPS in all delivery vehicles and importantly equipped all its delivery personnel with a smartphone, so that when a consumer places order- its flashed across all employees involved in order fulfillment. The real time order flashing helps Zopnow to collect order basket (SKUs) in less time.
With smartphone integration the company has reduced the warehouse pick up time by 60%. “Earlier, the average warehouse pickup time was around 20 minutes, which at present optimized to 8 minutes,” said Singh.
The GPS enabled vehicles allow Zopnow to keep track of delivery and importantly consumers can also track their order through its real time tracking interface – once the order dispatches from the warehouse.
Fast delivery is fine. But is it economical to dispatch every single order in three hours delivery slot? “In fact its not viable to dispatch single order in three hours. We do a lot of clubbing, through which we dispatch 4-5 different deliveries at a time for same or common area,” said Singh. Zopnow leverages GPS coordinate system for clubbing. Clubbing is essentially an algorithm based on cluster of consumers putting up in proximity of 2-3 kms with similar buying behavior or order basket.
In case the company has to deliver four orders from same apartment or area spanning across different delivery slots, it convinces all four consumers to have common slot, and for this Zopnow extends some loyalty points. To avoid inconvenience Zopnow asks two delivery slots (primary and secondary) from consumers at the time of placing order. Though, the company claims to deliver 99% of orders in primary slot.
Zopnow’s expansion, profitability and future plan
Zopnow plans to have another warehouse in Bangalore to serve the entire city limits, currently it covers 40 to 50% areas of Bangalore. “We are adding new categories like utensils and regional foods from various states, which is otherwise not accessible in Bangalore,” said BK Birla, another Zopper at Zopnow.
Besides Bangalore, the company plans to foray into cities such as Pune, Gurgaon and Hyderabad. When asked about profitability, “We will become profitable by July this year, currently we are making positive gross margin on warehouse level, and foresee the break even on company (overall) level in next 2-3 months,” concluded Birla.