Indian e-commerce firm Flipkart and its fashion-etailer Myntra have both decided to shut down their mobile websites. While Myntra is expected to shut down its website by the year end, Mint reports that Flipkart may be following suit. According to a report in Mint, people familiar with the matter have told the paper that Flipkart is considering shutting down its website over time to make it an app-only platform. According to a Flipkart spokesperson, the app has gained relevance because it allows the users to stay logged in all the time and also the shopping is quicker with faster checkouts as compared to the website.
As one may have noticed over the last couple of months, Flipkart and Myntra both have announced lots of app-only discount sale days. This is clearly a move to test the waters and it seems like the numbers are talking. According to Prasad Kompalli, head of Myntra ecommerce platform, around 90% of traffic and 70% of orders on Myntra are from its mobile app. No wonder, Myntra is p0ndering migrating to a mobile app platform only. No such numbers were available for Flipkart.
While seamless shopping experience is one aspect of a mobile e-commerce app, the other advantage is saving on costs. Maintaining a website, advertising and reaching out to consumers on the web platform is a tedious process whereas on an app-platform, things are relatively more focussed. Collecting relevant user data and targetted marketing is easier on the app than on the website according to people familiar with the matter.
Flipkart does about 8 million shipments a month, and two-thirds of its online traffic comes from users in small cities and towns. Flipkart’s app-only direction assumes larger significance in these places where most people don’t own desktop computers and have limited access to broadband.
Adnani said Myntra’s growth on the app was higher than that of Flipkart, which led the online fashion retailer to decide to shut down its website and move all operations to its app starting May 1. Flipkart had acquired Myntra last year for Rs 2,000 crore.