Source: Mahesh Aravinth // Pexels // CC2.0

Flipkart has decided to take another shot at hyperlocal deliveries, and has launched ‘Flipkart Quick’.  The service has been restricted for select locations in Bengaluru, with the plan to expand to 6 other cities in the next few months.

The service will cover a wide range of products from the categories of Grocery, Fresh, Dairy, Meat, Mobiles, Electronics Accessories, Stationery Items and Home Accessories, offering its users over 2,000 products that can be delivered in just under 2 hours. Consumers can choose to order in the next 90 minutes or book a 2-hour slot as per their convenience. Customers will have the option to make orders at any hour and get their orders delivered between 6am to midnight. Moreover, the company has only set a minimal Rs. 29 fee for availing the Flipkart Quick services.

“Flipkart, India’s homegrown e-commerce marketplace, today announced the launch of its hyperlocal service – ‘Flipkart Quick’ building on its technology capabilities and supply chain infrastructure. Flipkart Quick is aimed to offer unmatched customer experience, riding on wide selection, top-class quality and a new location mapping technology framework,” the company said in a press release.

The service will debut in select area of the Bengaluru suburbs, including Whitefield, Panathur, HSR Layout, BTM Layout, Banashankari, KR Puram and Indiranagar. Flipkart Quick will take a latitude and longitude approach to delivery, rather than the usual PIN code, which can span over a vast area. Not only will this shift narrow down the location to be more precise but will also result in sharper delivery time

In a world where Amazon reigns the e commerce market of just about every market the company has tapped, Flipkart has managed to sustain a presence in one of the biggest internet markets around the world. However, the Walmart backed company realises that to compete, it has to deliver the at least the same functionality Amazon delivers, if not more. This new hyperlocal delivery system will compete directly with Prime Now, which still has not made its way to the entire country.

The company plans to bring more customers to its fold using this new service, as the prospect of lightning fast deliveries using Flipkart hubs in their vicinity might entice more users to choose Flipkart over its rivals.

“This is a great model for India as households of all sizes are already used to their neighbourhood Kirana stores. In fact, Indian families are so comfortable with what we call the ‘hyperlocal context’, that there is a tendency to develop deep, familial ties with vendors, shopkeepers and service providers – now with the convenience of e-commerce. While we start with our dark store (no-walkin) model, wherein we enable sellers to store inventory close to the consumer; this model has the potential of encouraging local entrepreneurship and enabling new business strategies and partnerships,” said Sandeep Karwa, Vice President, Flipkart. He also added that with Flipkart Quick, the company now has the capability to bring more and more kirana stores on its platform, thus boosting the unorganised sector.

The company has already had an unsuccessful attempt at hyperlocal deliveries with a service it launched in 2015 named Nearby, which delivered perishables, grocery, wellbeing, and household items within 60 minutes. However, the lackluster response from the market led to an abrupt discontinuation of the service and a memory so bitter that Flipkart failed to even mention Nearby in today’s announcement.