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M-commerce: Is it the future of retailing?

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Mobile marketing has the potential to change the paradigm of retailing – from the stereotype consumers entering the retailing environment to retailers entering the consumer’s environment anytime, anywhere on mobile devices. In an exclusive conversation with IMAGES Retail, Alan D’Souza, CEO, Vavia Technologies discusses what makes m-commerce the new game changer in the retail industry.
According to you, how bullish are retailers to develop their own apps to tab the m-commerce boom?
With the mushrooming of smartphone users across the country, m-commerce is the future to look out for! For retailers, it has become imperative to have significant presence in every possible space where their target audience is spending time. On an average, every user spends 80 per cent of their time on their mobile while on the go. Having said that, we cannot ignore the exclusive offers retailers introduce every other day to lure the consumer from web to mobile. This is a real-time example of how bullish retailers are to develop and promote their own apps to tab the m-commerce boom. Also, the ability to target users through notifications based on their usage patterns and by getting advanced analytics makes mobile apps the most important communication tool today.
What is the importance of mobile in today’s customer-focused economy?
Mobile phones have become an integral part of one’s day to day routine. That said, the analytics provided through mobile apps allows a great degree of customer profiling and targeting, thereby making it extremely important to have mobile apps as part of the overall business strategy.
Your comments on the future of retail industry? How can mobile as a platform help retailers ascertain their sustenance?
Undoubtedly, the debate continues between online versus brick and mortar. However, if we talk about user ease and convenience, then certainly the online medium has cut down on almost all those hassles of hopping shops, unnecessary travelling cost, parking issues, exchange or return inconvenience, making baseless purchase decisions and much more! Also, consumers are making a swift shift from web to mobile for their day to day activities. While consumers are more comfortable accessing their needs on mobile at all times, retailers have the opportunity of staying connected with the user and keeping them engaged wherever they go.
Please explain the modus operandi of Freepaisa.
Freepaisa is amongst India’s finest platform that connects app developers with the right kind of audience using rewards as a model. The platform rewards users for trying and installing apps listed while app developers in turn get access to a sudden boost of new users. The users of this app are rewarded for just installing and performing the mentioned actions on free apps from the play store. With Freepaisa, users get INSTANT free talk time and recharge in minutes. Additionally, Freepaisa also rewards users for introducing their friends to the platform.
How can retailers promote their own app with the help of apps like Freepaisa?
Freepaisa makes life simpler for those who are always on the lookout for various apps on a play store. What works wonders for retailers is that the right apps are served to the target audience based on the profiling done on Freepaisa platform. The best part is that users are motivated to try out new apps because of the rewards they receive for downloading and using different apps that get converted into free mobile recharge.
Please name some of the e-etailers present on Freepaisa.
On Freepaisa we are currently working with various established brands as well as startups like Flipkart, Snapdeal, CouponDunia, Paytm, Meru Cabs, TOI, Traffline, MakeMyTrip, Foodpanda and many more.
How do advertisers calculate ROI on Freepaisa?

Basically, Freepaisa allows acquiring a huge volume of new users for a fraction of a cost that is usually spent on conventional digital marketing methods. This volume of new users also helps advertisers to be noticed on the play store. We also promote several apps on a referral model where we reward our users for referring certain apps through their social channels. This is the finest way of acquiring a good user base as social sharing gives users better confidence to try out new apps.
Have you raised any external funding for the same?
The parent company behind Freepaisa – Vavia Technologies – has previously raised funding from Spice Digital for expansion of its product line.

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