After having successfully launched the food and grocery chain, Reliance Retail is now busy polishing its plans to offer consumer durables in a big way.
The highly competitive and price sensitive durables’ market has hotted up with the entry of Tata Infiniti, whose first 20,000 sq. ft. durables’ store “Croma,” was recently launched in Mumbai. Plans are afoot to roll out 30 Croma stores in next 18 months, while 100 stores will come up in the next four years. Regional players like Vivek’s, Vijay Sales and Sales India, among others, are also ramping up their operations in different parts of the country.
What may, however, tilt the balance in favour of Reliance, apart from its massive roll out, is its strategy to provide ‘after-sales service’ on consumer durables through its own service network. In the case of durables, ‘after-sales-service,’ plays an important role in choosing a brand. Consumers would, therefore, opt to purchase from a retailer, who has integrated pan-India sales and servicing facility.
The Reliance plan to set up a huge ‘after sales service’ network may also help cut repairing costs, which would benefit customers as well as small brands. This may, take away the advantage, thus far, enjoyed by big brands like, LG, Samsung, Philips, and Nokia, who have not only invested heavily in their service infrastructure but offer service as a key brand differentiator as well.