How would you react if you were told that you could get free talktime by paying nothing extra for your usual restaurant meal? How would you like to get discount vouchers at the best of brands, be it clothing or accessories? Yes, this is not limited to imagination anymore. It is an actual growing market in India. Cashback and point redemption have started to evolve at such a level that there are many organizations that have made these their core business.
Crown-it, Fashalot, Nearbuy and so on are terms that are trending in the digital world today. All of these offer unique services but their main anchor point is Cashback. O2O or online-to-offline is the term that describes sites and apps like Crown-it, which provide information, service and discounts online on websites and apps so that customers can get better deals offline, in real-world restaurants, shops and movie theatres. O2O startups also help businesses deal with excess supply by finding customers close to them.
Sameer Grover, the founder of Crown-it said
“We are an online-to-offline company. Our core proposition is to drive customers for fragmented businesses. We will continue to target retail stores across India in the next three-four years across multiple categories like restaurants, bars, groceries, salons among others.”
Crown-it and Magicpin mainly deal with restaurant transactions, in which you get points or crowns by uploading an image of the bill or taking a selfie in the restaurant. You can then redeem these points by getting discount vouchers or talktime. Fashalot follows a similar model but just for clothing and accessories brands. Started as a product discovery store, where a user could enter a product name and get deals closest to him/her, Fashalot pivoted its model this year to a store discovery platform.
“One can follow a store, rate, check-in, and get points after uploading the bill. One can then redeem these points in restaurants,” says Amit Kaushal, who previously worked at Intuit and started Fashalot in 2014. “E-commerce is still just 1% of the retail industry in India. In the US, it is 12%. The rest of the transactions are still taking place offline,” he says, explaining why the future belongs to companies like his.
So the next time you head out to eat at a restaurant or decide to go shopping, do make use of these apps. Save money and get exciting new offers every time!