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How to start an Online grocery store

How to start an Online grocery store

An online grocery store may net you profit if you start your business out the right way. Use your talent for picking the best produce and sleuthing out seasonal bargains to launch an online grocery store that will keep customers well fed and your bottom line operating in the green.

Our local grocery or kirana store owners have constantly endeavoured to make our lives convenient. Traditionally, kirana stores have emphasised on the “customisation approach” – they take your delivery orders on the phone, arrange for home delivery of groceries, allow you to keep monthly accounts and even offer to remind you on items that you may miss out from your monthly grocery list. And with the advent of increased FDI and MNC players in the retail sector, it would naturally be expected that kirana stores may be impacted to a moderate extent.


Setting up an Online grocery store is one of the best business ideas. This is one of the new concept and there are only few online kirana stores in India which can be counted on finger tips. One can get benefitted by entering early into the business as there are very few competitors in India.

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What is this business idea about?

We know that groceries/kirana items are sold in kirana shops available near to us. However , one may or may not find time to buy during the day time due to our busy schedules. Online Kirana stores offer the services through online websites where one can fill the details and the products would be delivered to home with small service charges.

How to start this new business?

Below steps can be followed to enter into this business.

1) Selecting the location of business: Since the products are sold online, the location need not be near to the center of the market nor in the centre in the city. The only criteria we feel would be, selecting the location which should be nearer to transportation facilities. The products should be able to dispatch easily through local transportation.

2) Identifying the areas where we need to sell the products. To start with, the base location needs to be selected. Once the services are provided within the City where the business is located, it could be extended to various cities nearer to us.

3) Building an e-commerce website to sell the products: Since it involves building a good websites, going for free website creation methods would not help. Identify professional e-commerce building institutions to create the e-commerce. Ensure that proper training is given to the team, else we end up struggling in updating the inventory into the websites and delay the online sales.

4) Starting with a fewer products. Start this business with a few products.

There are various benefits to going with this approach.

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a) When you order buying bulk of quantity of same products, you get maximum discounts.

b)In case you have variety of items, but low quantity, this would create supply problem. You may not be able to fulfill the requirements of customer.

5) Manpower: One cannot be able to guess about the manpower requirement in initial stages as it depends on the size of the business. There are three main teams required for the business.

a). Purchasing team: This team need to work on identifying what to purchase and getting the products at lower prices.

b). Inventory team: This team would keep accounting for the products received and products sold and returned.

c) Sales team: This team need to primary work on two areas. One is the ways to identify and attract customers and second is to ensure that the products are sold and dispatched to customers. The success of this business depends on how we are trying to be closer to customers and how the services are being delivered within the promised time.

6) Other ways to attract the customers and to be success in this online grocery store business

a) In initial stages of business, offer huge discounts. You may end up in zero profit for few months. But treat this as investment.

b) Provide quick service to the customer. Deliver the products within the promised time, Customer can trust only when we deliver, what we say

c) Resolve customer complaints at a faster pace.

Things You‘ll Need

● Competitor Analysis

● Business Plan

● Business Loan

● Insurance

● Warehouse

● Refrigeration Unit

● Racking, Store and Bins

● Websites

● Marketing Program

Business Overview
Here’s a high-tech option for starting a grocery delivery service. Develop a website that features grocery items for sale. To start, offer only the most popular grocery items, like milk and bread, and as the business expands, so can your product line. Contract the delivery aspect of the service to people in your local community seeking to earn a part-time income. The operating format for the site would be very basic and easy to establish. Customers would simply log on to the site, select the items they wish to purchase, enter payment and shipping information and wait for their groceries

Selling online

You may decide that your type of shop is best suited to the internet, in which case you will need to consider a different set of factors.

Setting up your website is your first priority and if you are serious about your business it is best to get it professionally designed and developed. This is especially true when you need a shop-front function as this needs to work smoothly and give customers confidence in you when they are handing over their credit card details.

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Many people think that just creating a website is enough and that the customers will start flocking to it in their droves. Of course when you consider just how many websites and more importantly, online retailers, there are on the internet you’ll know that this is far from the case.

Invest time in learning how to optimize your site to rank near the top for the search engine terms that fit your business. Key things to work on are creating intelligent, relevant content and getting other relevant websites to link to your site.

Other things to consider when running an online shop are: the amount of stock to buy and where you will store it; how you will deliver goods to customers and what your terms will be; how you will take payment and what payment options you’ll be able to offer to customers; how you will keep your website up-to-date with new products and new content; where you can advertise and how you will differentiate your business from its competitors.

Detail your Customers, Competitors, and Research

Deciding exactly which markets you want to target will help give your business activities focus. In your plan you should include customer profiles, i.e. who are they, where do they live, what types of products do they buy and what type of lifestyle do they lead? Once you have done so, go back to your business description and make sure that the product or service you are offering matches your target market.

In this section, you should also give information about your competitors. Even if you feel you have a unique product, you will always have competitors so think this through carefully. Re-iterate what separates your business from your competition.

If you have conducted any research into the viability of your business, which supports your projections, include it here.

Ordering Food Online
● An online grocery store is a website that allows users to purchase food over the Internet to be delivered to the person at a later time. Ordering food on the Internet is similar to ordering any other product–the desired food items can be searched for specifically, or one can browse through listings of products or sections, similar to sections one might walk through at an actual grocery store. The products offered by an online grocery store are identical to a normal grocery store. When one has finished shopping, checkout is made with a credit card, and the buyer must specify certain hours that he will be available to receive the food for delivery. Since Internet groceries must deliver the food to the customers, they typically pay a fee for delivery based on the amount of food they buy.

The Online Grocery Market in India [Report]
You will be surprised to know that India is the sixth largest grocery market in the world. So much for a country where 41.6 percent people are below the poverty line. The food and grocery segment constitutes about 70 per cent of the $470 billion retail market in India. While only 5-8 percent of this market is organized, the rest are actually disorganized mom-and-pop shops run by family members. But the trend is fast changing. More and more food and grocery stores are falling in line and growing at a rate of 18.4 percent YoY.

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And now with the growth in nuclear urban couples, internet friendly shoppers, rising disposable incomes and rising e-commerce reliability, times are changing. Grocery e-tailing has caught on as one of the new verticals and spawned many a start ups, including a few mentioned above. According to a study conducted by D’Essence Consulting, 85 per cent of those who shop for groceries online are in the age bracket of 22-45. While studies show more men shop online, women e-shoppers are also growing rapidly.

So what is it that really influences people to come online and buy groceries? Has the touch-and-feel factor we always preferred, diminished? What is it really? When questioned some said it was because of convenience of shopping within the premises of a comfortable zone and to avoid crowds, hankering over prices, rising conveyance costs, and ease of delivery. Some others felt that it was also due to the fact that ecommerce has opened up, people are more informed about possible transaction risks and the modes of payment are numerous. The study portrays other factors that influence people to shop online are the advantages of discovering products that are not so easy to find on the retail shelf, valuable discounts/offers, and the benefit to stick within the pre-envisioned budget.

But is everything really perfect in wonderland? We doubt so. While egrocery tailing may seem to be a no fringe business model, the reality is that these online companies are finding it pretty difficult to scale up

the business. On one side where they face constant hiccups in maintaining a solid supply chain management, building up first and repetitive customer base is a gigantic challenge. This is because profit lines are marginal and there are numerous players offering similar services. And the competition is not limited within new-generation e-grocers alone! The good old kirana stores also give them a run for their money as people often buy groceries and other utility items from local shops while enjoying a personal rapport with the owners, built over a long period of time.

However, times are changing and ecommerce is seeing a new dawn every day. What subsequently happens only time will tell. For now we are keeping our fingers crossed.

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