Sometime back most of the people were even not aware that there is any e-commerce site named Flipkart.com but now I think most of net surfers know about Flipkart though its in business from last 5 years…Flipkart had dream run till date mainly becoz of customer’s word of mouth and quality service…Flipkart has maintained tight control on its end to end logistics which is the key reason to provide quality service, infact some analysts start wondering whether Flipkart is an online commerce site or its a Logistics company…I would like to add that in India due to its diversity even Global experts are not able to crack success formulae for Logistics…Though Flipkart has invested very heavily to create logistics network but it seems still something is lacking in last mile connectivity…Anyways why i was discussing logistics was becoz it was prime reason, i cancelled my order which i placed with Flipkart
Sometime back i was planning to buy LCD TV…I checked the rates at many stores as i always believe that little bit of research always help to save good amount of money…The model which i finalized was available at Chroma for approx 50k, at Pai International for 48.5k and at Girias & Adishwara for 49k…When i checked at Flipkart it was available for 45k….I was keen to buy from Chroma and not from others…..A little research on internet, i came to know that since Flipkart is based out of Bangalore so its safe bet to order electronic item from Flipkart in Bangalore and secondly in past i ordered many items (under 1k) from Flipkart & i was very happy with their services. Moreover i was saving cool 5k (I thought of purchasing TataSky+HD DVR from this saving).
Finally on D-day i.e. Wednesday i placed an online order through Flipkart website by keeping my fingers crossed as it was big purchase of 45k….I called Flipkart after placing the order to re-confirm the same and to check on delivery….I was told that their CC department will call me to inform about delivery date…
On Friday late evening (same week), i received call from CC of Flipkart and they informed that they can deliver it on next day i.e. Saturday. They gave me an option to select from morning slot (Delivery between 10 AM to 2 PM) or Evening Slot (2 PM to 8 PM)….I selected morning slot…Though next day morning i had some urgent work but i was more keen to receive the delivery of my order and postponed my work…Next day morning i again received call from Flipkart and they informed me that their Labour staff is on Holiday today so they cannot deliver on saturday…They told me to select any slot from Monday..I selected Morning slot on Monday….My 1st concern was that on Friday late evening, i rcvd a call regarding next day delivery so their Customer Care was not aware of next day holiday for labour staff…I dont think so they were aware so it was some communication gap in logistics chain or may be they might have realized afterwards that they will not be able to deliver in my area becoz of large no of orders for delivery on Saturday..Anyways i called on sunday to reconfirm my order delivery on Monday and it was reconfirmed..
I would like to just add that whenever order is dispatched from warehouse, SMS is sent to customer that his order is out for delivery…On Monday, my wife waited for order delivery during morning slot but neither i received any call nor any sms on same..I waited till 2 PM and then i called Flipkart CC, i was told that my order got delayed but its already dispatched in the morning….I insisted them to share Mobile No of delivery boy but they refused….Actually till that time my order was not dispatched from Warehouse….I called them multiple time and at around 3 PM i received SMS from flipkart that my order is out for delivery…I called CC and they confrimed i will receive the order by 4 PM….At 4 PM i again called and they told me by 5 PM but they always refused to share mobile no of delivery boy….At 5 PM i lost my patience as my wife wasted One and a half day just to receive the order which i feel was never dispatched….I called CC and requested me to connect to manager. I requested him to cancel the order and he was happily ready to cancel my order & i cancelled my order.
After sometime, during my interaction with 1 of my frnd from Consumer electronics industry, he told me that margins in consumer electronics is very very very thin…Its a volume game and operate on MOP (minimum operating price)…When i told him that Flipkart was providing me particular TV model for 45k..He was amazed that price was lower than MOP and it is referred as under cutting by distributor…As Flipkart might be sourcing from distributors and list products based on committment so in my case they might not be able to source at under cut rate…This is my assumption…After that i learned a lesson, For any big purchase its always safe to buy from reliable dealers like Chroma, LG Shoppe, Sony Centre etc. rather being dependent on virtual world. Online e-tailers are good for small purchases like books, pen drive, CD’s etc.
Update Mar 15, 2012: Today while going through one of the sites i was shocked to learn that Flipkart is deleting negative reviews from its site and pumping fake positive reviews…I am posting the link for benefit of my readers, the feedback is pertaining to logistics only.
Update May 13, 2012: Flipkart accept that they are moderating or we can say rejecting the service feedback. It is quite strange that in today’s networked world, a company think that they can suppress the people’s voice. Any service provider should be open to accept feedback positive or negative in public domain as it help them in improving overall customer experience. It also helps customer to take informed decisions. Flipkart has put review moderation process on it’s official blog, Pls find following link
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