Festive East: Average Transaction Values up 14%, bill sizes up 8% over pre-Covid levels
With Dussehra/ Durga Puja festivities beginning, the country is in the throes of festive fervour. After no Dussehra/ Durga Puja celebrations last year due to the pandemic, consumers and brands are looking at a return to markets with a vengeance. With the vaccination drive gathering momentum and most of the COVID-19 restrictions lifted, there is a general air of optimism. Offices, market places, educational institutions, malls and cinema halls – all have now opened, giving people a sense of return to normalcy.
Like the rest of India, the East and North-East markets are in a resurgent mood. Durga Puja is the biggest festival in West Bengal and Tripura and is also celebrated extensively in Assam and other parts of the North-East. Markets are seeing the return of shoppers, and some marketers see a revenge shopping trend gaining precedence. Amid COVID-29 protocols, the shopping frenzy has started and will only increase in the coming days. Experts believe that this is not just revenge shopping, but also a re-assertion and reclaiming of a life that one was living before the pandemic struck.
This festive season, Adgully turns the spotlight on the East and North-East markets and is speaking to a cross-section of brands, marketers and market experts to gauge the mood of the shoppers and brand sentiments.
In conversation with Adgully, S Ganeshkumar, COO, Raymond Lifestyle Business, speaks about the demand surge seen across India, as well as the company’s online and offline strategies for the festive season and more.
What kind of sentiments do you see in the East markets during this festive season? Are these sentiments close to the pre-COVID-19 levels?
The East market is on an upward boom with Pujo and with festive season around the corner, sentiments are very upbeat across segments. We have witnessed days where witnessing sales higher than the pre-COVID-19 levels. There is a sense of revenge shopping across the country and East is no different. For the East region, when we compare to pre-COVID-19 levels, we have already seen increase on daily sales of the level of 45% on certain days. The Pujo pick up started with from the last week of September and real impact is expected in the first 10 days of October.
How are you planning your strategy for online and offline sales? What kind of footfalls are you expecting during this festival?
We are all geared up to offer an eclectic mix of merchandise for this festive season. There is an increased focus to drive conversions by driving specific messages to our TG. We are seeing recovery of both footfalls and increase in the average basket value that will drive the business. The positivity in the consumer sentiment is evident through the increase in Average Transaction Values (ATV) growing by 14% over pre-COVID-19 levels and the bill sizes also growing by 8% over pre-COVID-19 levels.
Any specific campaign strategies planned for the festival season? What kind of discounts and offers have you come up with for your customers this year?
The Pujo campaign is focusing on both Physical and Digital space. All stores are well prepared to create festive environment and communications in both the regular and digital media. Our Pujo campaign has already started over the past 5 weeks and will conclude shortly. Initial response has been encouraging from a business perspective. Our main Festive and wedding campaign are expected to start soon in a couple of days.
All our campaigns are designed with a well thought through integrated customer journey that can either be concluded with the consumer choosing to fulfill the shopping experience either online or offline. The concept of giving more to a consumer rather by offering real value driven deals on purchases is the key to loyalty. We focus on adding incremental value instead of being a discount driven player. We have tied up with likeminded brands that will enable consumers to derive higher value when a consumer chooses to shop with Raymond.