Mumbai, 10th October 2023: PayNearby, India’s largest branchless banking and digital network, announced that its meta-commerce platform – PayNearby Mall, has registered exceptionally low return rates, helping its partner brands optimise costs. The platform which enables easy availability of goods and services in an assisted mode at the last mile has generated a return rate of ~10% when the average rate typically ranges between 20-30%.
In the last six months, over ~25,000+ retailers have enthusiastically embraced the platform. Interestingly, when compared to the urban and metro areas, where e-commerce penetration is high, PayNearby Mall registered a 46% GTV in rural regions, closely tailed by semi-urban areas, with 45%. This shift in consumer behaviour suggests that rural India is increasingly embracing the e-commerce revolution and is as aspirational as its urban counterpart. The most sought-after categories include grocery at 35%, followed by mobile and accessories and cloths at 14% and 9% respectively.
In the e-commerce industry, returns frequently arise from prevalent issues such as impulsive purchases, inaccurate item selection, or unmet customer expectations. However, a substantial number of product returns can significantly impact the financial performance of e-commerce operations. Each returned item incurs expenses associated with processing, restocking, and potential damages, increasing operational costs and logistical complexities. It erodes the profit margins significantly. PayNearby Mall’s innovative assisted meta-commerce model, which blends the convenience of digital commerce with the personal touch of PayNearby retailers, allows partner brands to optimise the costs associated with processing returns.
In areas where e-commerce adoption is low, PayNearby Mall allows partners to bring their products at neighbourhood stores. Customers can walk into these nearby stores and with the help of the local retailer access products on an aggregated e-platform of 100+ partner sites, and shop easily for the products they need. The personalised approach of this unique model helps customers make the right decision and buy the right products, reducing the likelihood of returns due to impulsive buying or incorrect item selection. It results in enhanced cost efficiency for e-commerce players, preserving profit margins and contributing to their overall financial sustainability.
Speaking on the development, Anand Kumar Bajaj, Founder, MD & CEO, PayNearby, said, “E-commerce has transformed how people shop. But with it comes the challenge of returns. Studies show that 54% of buyers consider free returns as one of the biggest factors influencing their buying decisions. However, high return rates often impact the financials, customer satisfaction, and overall operational efficiency of businesses. PayNearby Mall’s low return rate underscores the effectiveness of our approach. On one hand, our meta-commerce model empowers rural consumers by bringing the products they want within their reach. On the other hand, with our retailers offering the human touch in helping customers make informed decisions, our e-commerce partners are seeing reduced returns rates, optimised costs and increased revenue.”