Being Human Clothing's Manish Mandhana on brand’s online store initiative
Today online companies have become the market leaders in selling merchandise and a big market share is going towards the online buyers. Now, a person gets into the e-store and looks at all the products available, compares the price, selects from the sizes and orders. More and more people don’t want to lose time and they don’t want to go to the physical store.
Apparel brand Being Human Clothing launched its e-commerce site earlier this month. The brand website witnessed over 500 transactions in the first week with an average transaction value of Rs 1,500. Manish Mandhana, CEO, The Mandhana Retail Ventures Ltd and Being Human Clothing, tells Ashish K Tiwari about the brand’s online store initiative, reasons for launching a dedicated platform and the way forward.
Why have your own branded online store?
Today online companies have become the market leaders in selling merchandise and a big market share is going towards the online buyers. Now, a person gets into the e-store and looks at all the products available, compares the price, selects from the sizes and orders. More and more people don’t want to lose time and they don’t want to go to the physical store. The offline business is more of a weekend business now. Online is the way forward as the new generation is quickly embracing it and we can see a huge disruption happening in the business because of this. It was thus very obvious that we look at this aspect.
Is an in-house team handling online stores?
No, we are working with two specialist entities. The first one takes care of the logistics, supply chain and software part while the second handles the look and feel of the website. Our stores will work as an online delivery outlet in addition to deliveries from our warehouse. With this initiative in place, we are now delivering a complete omnichannel experience to the customers.
How are you promoting the online store?
Before launching the online store on August 10, 2018, we’d done a test launch with our loyal customers and the response has been amazing. In fact, Salman Khan recorded a byte for the launch and uploaded it on his social media, which has brought us a host of new customers seeking the brand. We’ve got a fantastic response and over 500 orders within the first week. This is a very encouraging number to start with considering Being Human is a single brand platform. We hope to build it from here and elevate the experience, which in turn will bring in more community and add more pin codes across the country. Our aim is to reach to the roots of India.
Tell us about your online customers?
It is across the board. Our brand caters to people starting from 16 years going up to 40 years. It’s mainly a youth brand and more casual in nature. We have a wide customer base. So, all kinds of people are buying from across the country.
Are you not selling the kids wear range?
No, the website is only selling apparels for men and women. For kids wear (boys), we’d done a test launch in 2016 through our physical stores. This was done for two seasons post which we realised that it’s a tough market. That’s because a majority of the kids wear market is dominated by the unorganised players and pricing is a big concern here. Besides, kids grow fast so parents prefer to buy less expensive clothes and mainly buy during a discount season. It was dropping our ASP (average selling price) in stores.
Will you continue selling on e-marketplaces?
Yes, they constitute 8% to 9% of the overall business. They are masters in their business. It is like we have three departmental chain stores selling our products: Shopper Stop, Lifestyle and Central. Same way the idea is to grow the reach of the brand and capitalise on every selling opportunity.
How much incremental sales will your own online store generate?
It’s been a little over a week so we don’t know yet. It will be incremental but I think contribution from e-marketplaces will also continue to grow. That’s because they have a certain coupon system, cash back, and loyalty points etc. While everybody is trying to offer something better, going forward I see that (e-marketplaces) as super crowded place with offers and discounts. In such a scenario, our e-store will become a serious channel sell even current seasons merchandise at a full price. A premium customer will come to us because he will get to see the latest collection. There will be a differentiation of sort.