Until a few years ago, an entrepreneur wanting to launch an e-commerce business without a storage chain would have raised eyebrows. But, that was before dropshipping stormed into the world. Launched in 2016, BaapStore was among the early entrants in the Indian dropshipping space and was quick to seize the opportunity.
Currently working with over three lakh businesses and 50,000 products, the startup is helping aspiring entrepreneurs succeed with a robust retail chain management system that takes care of all e-commerce needs, right from creating a catalogue to delivering the product at the customer’s doorstep.
However, the journey to the top had its share of hits and misses for BaapStore’s founder Karthic Gurnani. Born into a family of entrepreneurs, he opted to kick off his professional journey with an IT job before starting his own discount coupon business in 2009. However, he had to shut the business down due to operational issues with retail chains after two years, only to start once again. In his second stint as an entrepreneur, Karthic started offering internet marketing services while selling products on eBay.
“I got to know about dropshipping services by providing marketing and assistance services to many clients in the internet marketing business. I was also learning about e-commerce directly via eBay sales,” shares Karthic.
In 2013-14, he also started selling products on Amazon. “Within a few transactions, I saw how difficult it was to sell on Amazon as they had a more standardised procedure, right from clicking photographs to creating a catalogue. It was different from eBay, which was too easy. As Amazon offers a standardised experience to its buyers, its rules were difficult to follow. eBay was more of an open marketplace where every seller had his/her own policy, own content format, etc,” he explains. The difference got Karthic thinking about how tedious the process might be for small sellers, when he himself found the process to be convoluted despite coming from a tech background and having worked with international dropshipping companies.
“My observation turned out to be correct when I saw how small traders in Gujarat struggled to sell their products online because of such complexities and that’s when I decided to enter the dropshipping sector,” says Karthic.
With BaapStore, entrepreneurs wouldn’t have to maintain an inventory to start their venture, unlike traditional businesses. The startup would provide them a catalogue of products which will be priced at wholesale cost.
Once they subscribe for the startup’s services by paying a fee, entrepreneurs can sell the products at retail profit via their website, marketplace or any other medium. When they get an order, the request is forwarded to the BaapStore backend, which then packages the product, ships it and delivers it to the customer.
Talking about the USPs of the startup, Karthic says, “We provide products at wholesale prices and take care of the backend ecosystem. Even if one goes to wholesale markets and buys products worth crores of rupees, they still will be paying the same or even a higher price than what we offer our clients.”
Calling BaapStore the perfect dropshipping platform for small traders and new entrepreneurs, Karthic says that the top selling categories are mobile accessories, women’s wear and kitchen accessories.
If you are wondering about how dropshipping simplifies the job of running a business, here are a few ways:
- No experience required: As BaapStore takes care of order management and delivery of products, the only thing that entrepreneurs need to focus on is marketing.
- Low investment: Unlike several businesses, using dropshipping does not require investing heavily in the business.
- Products at wholesale cost: One can choose from over 50,000 products that are sold at wholesale prices. This gives entrepreneurs the freedom to set their own selling prices.
- Real-time updates of stocks: BaapStore helps its clients in designing smart websites that send real-time automatic updates about stocks of products. Plus, if an entrepreneur is running out of a product, it is automatically added to the website.
- Delivering orders both nationally and internationally: With BaapStore, entrepreneurs can offer free delivery to customers living in more than 26,000 pin codes across India. It also offers same-day shipment service and delivers packages to international locations too.
- E-commerce website and hosting: One can choose from five design themes while creating a website which gives the entrepreneur 100% admin access. Other features of the service include free cloud hosting, pre-integrated shipping, payment gateways and free tools for bulk import, export and marketing.
- Higher profit margins: BaapStore’s dropshipping model facilitates entrepreneurs to set their own profit margins on non-MRP products. The startup provides up to 45% markdown margin on MRP of products for branded products.
Going from strength to strength, the startup now has over 4,000 stocking units as part of its retail chain management system. Since the COVID-19 outbreak in March 2020, BaapStore’s sales have grown by 2.5x.
With its cutting-edge dropshipping solutions, BaapStore is helping several small time entrepreneurs like Siraj Kumar who owns Max Cart Solutions to grow by leaps and bounds. An engineer-turned-entrepreneur, Siraj decided to leave his IT job three years ago for a more financially rewarding opportunity like running a business.
The Mumbai resident started looking for prospective models, and felt an e-commerce platform suited his needs best. But, the heavy investment required to launch an e-commerce business held Siraj back, until he learnt about BaapStore’s dropshipping services.
“After we built him a website, he understood its features and started marketing it. Using free marketing options like Facebook Groups, Whatsapp and Instagram, Siraj saw his business expanding. He leveraged tools like Google Analytics to understand where his clients were coming from and the most-viewed products on his website,” says Karthic.
With such analysis and promotions, he was able to get significant traffic to his website. He also deployed the coupon generator tool to garner user interest on various groups. “The users who earlier used to just window-shop were later turning into buyers and that’s how he started getting more sales. Meanwhile, our backend team ensured that the orders were duly fulfilled. Now, even his wife and father have joined him in running his online business,” adds Karthic.
Explaining BaapStore’s future plans, Karthic says, “When someone thinks of starting an online business or expanding their existing e-commerce business, they should never be worried about the investment on inventory. We would like to create an ecosystem with opportunities where every small seller has access to goods at the same price as the biggest seller, without having to invest a penny.”
The number of online shoppers in India is expected to cross 250 million by 2022, while the country’s e-commerce market is projected to end up somewhere between $100 billion and $140 billion by 2025, according to a report. The numbers underscore the opportunity that awaits entrepreneurs interested in foraying into the e-commerce sector. While managing a business might not be a walk in the park, with BaapStore one could eliminate the usual challenges in launching a venture to boost their shot at success.
To know more about BaapStore’s dropshipping services, head over to their website.