Is CoD killing Electronic Payments? – Part1

Is CoD killing Electronic Payments? – Part1

In India, Flipkart started operating in 2007 and till then e-commerce market started expanding. But still it is at its foetal stage. Being an online book seller, the company started offering its customers online transaction through e-payments. But in a bid to reach more customers, Flipkart took a step ahead and launched Cash-on-Delivery (CoD) service. It paid off and the result was phenomenal. Since its launch, CoD showed phenomenal result enticed the customers from rural areas, which in turn, contributed to 30 percent of its sales in just two months. And, this resulted into getting 80% of customers of overall COD orders for Flipkart.

As compared to developed nations, e-commerce in India is much more dependent on CoD. And, the key reason behind this is – it brings trust factor for customers. Today online payments have become the key source among offline sellers, but still customer’s concerns on revealing financial details persists.

In the last few years, we have seen have seen discoveries and innovations like mobile wallets and card-on-delivery, but due to poor implementation and complexities in the system have muffled their growth.

So, we can say that CoD is declining, let’s understand why and how:

Cash on Delivery is Becoming Convenience-on-Delivery

There is no denying in the fact that CoD has become the key reason why e-commerce is expanding in few countries like India, especially when we talk for high value transactions. Even for Flipkart too, 72 % of orders from metros are CoD, and 90 % are for Tier II cities. In fact, Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Chennai, Mumbai, Pune, Thane, Patna and Coimbatore are the ones that provide 35 percent of its overall CoD volume. According to Neeraj Aggarwal, Vice President (Last Mile), Flipkart – “As the customer base has expanded in smaller towns, the ones shifting to other payments modes in metros have neutralized for the difference.”

From Logistics perspective

Today E-commerce companies pay logistics surcharges for CoD – for around Rs 40 per delivery. Moreover, there are insurance and cash-handling costs, too.  Logistics giants like Gojavas and Ecom Express find 70 % CoD in the shipments they manage. However, CoD is a huge portion of their revenue. And, logistics players also agree that online payment is suitable for the entire ecosystem, which in turn, means that faster delivery with lesser number of attempts.

However, fewer websites offer card-on-delivery option, which offers customers to swipe their credit or debit cards after the delivery, but it’s not much popular yet. According to Shobhit Jain, Head of Express Delivery Business, Gojavas, – “COD or Cash on delivery is exponentially decreasing because today less than one percent of the eCommerce websites do not even mention it as an option.”

As free shipping is not much sustainable, if we see in long term. While the cost of delivering a package in India is the same as in other markets. And, that’s about $2—the average selling price is much higher there. Since inception, it’s been observed that Indian consumers are more likely to be interested in an online purchase when there is a promise of free delivery. While Shobhith believes that a fine balance could be created by reducing the costs, which can be done by lengthening the delivery period.

This is why CoD should die?

Today Online sellers are struggling due to CoD. According to Suraj Vazirani, an online seller – Since marketplaces do not offer an option to the seller to pick up only the prepaid orders, they need to deal with the CoD returns. He added that – “What a customer returns is barely checked by the pick-up guys and before it reaches to the store, the customer has been given the refund. Stores just charge the sellers one percent of the total MRP, which includes the charges for pick and pack, too along-with the other logistics and handling charges. And, this entire amount gets invested on the product that is not sold,” Suraj says.

COD comes with another challenge. And, that’s a vicious cycle. Most of the times Customer does not present at home to receive the order, which in turn, entails multiple attempts to deliver the product by the logistics player to make just one delivery. Hence the logistics pricing has become a function of the client’s business in prepaid and CoD, both.

According to reports, for every successful CoD delivery, the average number of attempts is 1.24, which means, it has to invest around 24 percent extra manpower in the last-mile delivery for all the CoD orders. Ecom Express noticed that as compared to prepaid returns, CoD returns are 30-percent more, especially in Tier II cities.  According to T.A. Krishnan, Co-founder, Ecom Express – “Customers are there extremely guarded with the details for net banking”.

5 Hidden and Unheard Stories from “The Ramayana”, the Hindu Epic – Part2

5 Hidden and Unheard Stories from “The Ramayana”, the Hindu Epic – Part2

In our previous post we’ve shared 2 exceptional stories of Ramayan which included – Do you know King Dashratha had one more child? And, how Ram and his brothers were born? &  Story behind the 10 heads of Ravan: who was an amazing Veena Player and Lord Shiva’s staunch devotee. In this post, too we are sharing few more exceptional stories of Ramayan. Here it goes:

  1. Laxman hadn’t slept for the entire 14 years of Ram’s exile and Laxman’s wife Urmila, made a huge sacrifice to make this happen.

Urmila, the wife of Laxman, wanted to accompany Rama, Sita and Laxman when they were leaving for exile, but he forced her to stay at Ayodhya Palace. During exile, at forest, in a bid to protect Rama and Sita, Laxman has to stay awake day and night. So, he requested, the Goddess of Sleep – Nindra to overlook him for the next 14 years so that he can stay awake. Nindra said that someone else has to fall asleep on his behalf for next 14 years to create balance, and for that Laxman asked her to consider his wife Urmila. Goddess of sleep, Nindra asked Urmaila, if she would take up Laxman’s sleep, which she gladly agreed and did.

And, then Urmila slept for 14 years, till Ram’s coronation. Because of her only it had been possible fo Laxman to slay Meghnath because Megnath was given a boon that he could only be killed by Gudakesh, which means that the one who has defeated sleep.

  1. Ram was the reincarnation of Vishnu, but do you know – who were his brother’s reincarnations of?

Most of us know that Ram is considered a re-incarnation of Vishnu. But do you know who his brother’s reincarnations were of? –  Bharat and Shatrughan were considered to be Lord Vishnu’s Sudarshan-Chakra and Conch-Shell, while Laxman was considered to be his Shesh-Naag , which is Lord Vishnu’s seat in Vaikunth. It is said that as Earth rests on Shesh-Naag’s head and whenever Adi Shesh gets angered, the Earth starts shaking. Later Laxman took birth as Balram, the elder brother of Lord Krishna. This happened because Laxman had complained that since he has born as the younger brother of Ram, he has to comply with all the commands of Ram. And, that’s why in order to fulfill his wish, he became the elder brother of Lord Krishna, which was given a name Balram.

  1. Ram’s promise became the cause of Laxman’s death.

After Sita willingly got buried under Mother Earth, Ram knew that his duties were over on Earth and know it’s time to return back to Vaikunth, but that couldn’t be done because Hanuman won’t allow the Lord of death, Yam to meet Ram. So, in order to divert Hanuman, Ram threw his ring in underworld, which is called Paatal and asked Hanuman to get it. Then Ram invited Yam, but Yam put forth a condition in front of Ram, that the conversation between them must not be revealed to anyone and if anyone will interrupt the conversation, Ram would kill that person. To keep his promise, Ram asked Laxman to guard the gate to ensure no one can intercept the meeting of Lord Ram and Yam.

Meanwhile, angry sage Durvasa came to meet Ram. And, he was halted by Laxman. Angry Durvasa warned Laxman that if he would not let him meet Lord Ram, he would curse Ayodhya. Finding the situation critical,  Laxman went to talk to Ram, which resulted in intercepting the ram’s meeting with Yam. Hence, Laxaman intercepted the meeting. To abide by his promise, Laxman went to Saryu River and gave up his life. But it’s being said that Laxman’s death before Ram’s was important and required because Laxman is considered as the Shesh-Naag, the seat of Lord Vishnu, and that’s why Laxman had to return first, before Lord Vishnu returned to Vaikunth. And, later Vishnu reincarnated as Lord Ram.

So, did you enjoy our mesmerizing article, which shared a few exceptional and hidden stories of Ramayan and the history of Diwali. If you liked it, please share it with all your friends and dear ones. Parangat wishes you a grand Diwali!

5 Hidden and Unheard Stories from “Ramayana”, the Hindu Epic – Part1

5 Hidden and Unheard Stories from “Ramayana”, the Hindu Epic – Part1

Namaste! Diwali is here. The festival has been celebrated for the ages in India. But have you thought? – How and when did it originated? The history of Diwali celebrations is nearly as old as the history of India. So, here we bring you a few exceptional and unheard stories behind Diwali celebrations. Let’s check them out:

Valmikiji wrote one of the greatest Hindu epics named Ramayan, which spreads message of peace and humanity and conveys tips on being an ideal human being. Valmiki was the first person who passed Ramayana to the sons of Lord Ram, one of the core foundations of the Hindu culture. And, since then it has been passed on to the generations that have come. We all have heard about Ram’s émigré of 14 years, Ravan kidnapped Sita, and Ram’s eventually success over the Ravan with the help of his monkey army. But still there’s much more to this legendary epic, and today we are bringing you some of the most talked about and hidden stories from the Ramayana.

  1. Do you know King Dashratha had one more child? And, how Ram and his brothers were born?

Before the birth of Ram and his brothers, King Dashratha and his first wife Kaushalya had a daughter, whose name was Shanta. Few of us know that Kaushalya’s elder sister, whose name was Vershini and her husband Raja Rompad, who was a great friend of Raja Dashratha because they studied in the same Ashram had no progeny. Once, when Vershini  (Kaushalya’s sister) was in Ayodhya, she joked with Raja Dashratha around asking for a child and to which Raja Dashratha said and promised her that she can adopt his daughter, Shanta. And, as he promised Raja Dashratha gave Shanta to Raja Rompad and she became an adopted child of Raja Rompad, the king of Angdesh.

One day, when Shanta grown up and was now became a very beautiful woman; she was in a conversation with the Raja Rompad. Suddenly, a Brahmin came to visit Raja Rompad to ask for the help for cultivation during the monsoon season. Since Raja Rompad and Shanta were busy in their conversation, Brahmin felt ignored and left the kingdom. Lord Indra, who is said to be the God of rains, felt offended because a Brahmin, who visited Raja Rompad was his devotee. And, then Lord Indra decided to reprove Raja Rompad, which resulted in no rain in the coming monsoon. This created a lot of suffering to progenies of Raja Rompad and then he decided to get free from this curse. And, that’s why he requested Rishi Rishyasringa to perform a Yagna for making Lord for rains, Indra happy and he succeeded, too. To pay honor to the Rishi Rishyasringa, King Dashratha and King Rompad decided to marry Shanta to Rishyasringa.

Dahsratha had no successor yet, so he called Rishyasringa to perform a Yagna for him too. And, then the God of Fire gave a dessert to Dashratha for his wives, because of eating that : Ram and his brothers were born.

  1. Story behind the 10 heads of Ravan: who was an amazing Veena Player and Lord Shiva’s staunch devotee

Ravan, factually, was a staunch follower of Lord Shiva, an extravagant scholar, an amazing ruler and a genius of Veena. After accomplishing his education, Ravan underwent a immense penance to please Lord Shiva on the banks of river Narmada. For pleasing the Lord Shiva, Ravan axed his head. And, every time that happened, the head used to grow back; this continued for 10 times in order to please Lord Shiva. Thus, Shiva granted 10 heads to Ravan that he sacrificed in order to please him. These 10 heads were the indication of six shastras and the four vedas that Ravan mastered.

And, after he succeeded in winning over Lanka, Ravan again went to meet Lord Shiva in Kailash, where his entry was denied by Nandi, who was Shiva’s gatekeeper. This made Ravan annoyed, and he teased him, which made Nandi furious and Nandi cursed him that one day his Lanka would be smashed by a monkey.

To again, prove his devotedness to Lord Shiva, Ravan tried to haul up Kailash. This made Lord Shiva angry, thus placing a toe on the hill, thus making Ravan’s hand crushed underneath it.  It was so painful that his cry shook the world. To please Lord Shiva, Ravan plucked out his nerves and played Shiva’s praise, due to which Lord Shiva released Ravan and gifted him an exceptional sword and also gave him the name Ravan, whose meaning is “the one with terrifying snarl”.

Part2 of 5 Hidden and Unheard Stories from “The Ramayana” will be discussed in next post.

Impact of IoT on the Future of Mobile App Development

Impact of IoT on the Future of Mobile App Development

IoT devices are basically known for sending and receiving data, while mobile applications are one of the most common channel through which data can be interpreted. What could be better if the two aspects of technologies get solidly bound with each other. Few analysts and geeks have predicted that by the year 2018, the worldwide market for connected M2M devices is expected to touch US$ 136 Billion and 99% of everything will be connected with the internet. So, Internet of Things is going to play very crucial role in mobile app development in the years to come. Let’s see how:

  1. Permeating mobility in organizations at execution level

Today almost every key industry, including enterprise, healthcare, automotive, retail and e-commerce etc is either adopting or looking forward to adopt IoT devices. Even rapid automation is occurring in manufacturing sector. And, by using IoT devices they are reducing effort and manpower. Tasks as simply restricted to pushing buttons and giving instructions for executing tasks. Most of the businesses have started adopting and experimenting newer ways through which technology can be lucratively adopted in order to automate processes. Because these platforms have the capability to strengthen the backend infrastructure so that every data and actions can be made easily available across authorized devices.

  1. Reducing Manpower and Effort

Mobile technology has imbibed many upcoming and latest technologies to come up with something new and interesting. To name a few – wearable devices, GPS, beacon technology, and voice navigation have made mobile technology more advanced and user-centric. And, this has lead to much advancement and interesting innovations like the light bulb can be easily operated with one’s Smartphone. And, so goes with IoT, as it allows complete integration with mobile devices. And, this helps in making gestures and controls much more adequate for performing intricate tasks like managing industrial machinery tasks.

  1. Offering more Room for Hybrid app development

Nowadays users are looking for newer and advanced ways of staying connected with their homes, cars and one another And, this is where mobile applications come in They are playing a key role in making the world more connected and engaging Today mobile app developers are building applications that include captivating UI, advance codes provided by hybrid platforms like Ionic, AngularJS, and PhoneGap. The UI/UX designs are created keeping in mind the requirements of the latest and trending devices such as smart watches.

  1. Just One app can help manage the entire household tasks

Dream of smart city has reached to newer heights. It was earlier a virtual fantasy, which has now become a reality. Now users can perform the complete operations of household appliances by just using gestures, voice controls and human presence detection. One of the enticing technologies is – beacon technology that is also contributing to make this fantasy a reality. However, mobile applications hold the key to its cost-effectiveness and easy access.

  1. Mobile manufacturers are leveraging the technological advancements

Leading and big mobile device manufacturers including Apple, Samsung, Ericsson and Google etc. are heavily investing on mobile ecosystem research and development. Right from the wearable technology to consumer electronics, everyone is leveraging these upcoming technologies and advancements. Now the world of mobile apps has taken a huge transition from Smartphones to tablets and now to wearable & IoT devices. And, these devices are being designed by considering these upcoming technologies that includes connected TVs and gaming consoles. Now new variations of mobile apps are expected that will be made available on car dashboards and household fixtures so that air conditioning can also be controlled.

As mobile connectivity is expanding its arms expands towards newer dimensions, mobile application development is becoming the prime focus of every huge business and technology. And, that’s why IoT is holding a bright future in mobile application development space where everything will be connected and communication will happen faster via the internet.
Parangat technologies offer an array of IoT Solutions by using latest technologies. We are known to deliver top-notch mobile app development solutions for IoT, wearable devices, GPS integration and beacon technology.

How to Increase Mobile App Engagement? – Part1

How to Increase Mobile App Engagement? – Part1

Before digging into one of the most popular concerns and strategies i.e. How to increase mobile app engagement, let’s take a look into a few stats:

According to Cezary Pietrzak, director of marketing at Appboy, today retention is one of the biggest challenges in mobile app world, because 65% of users usually stop using apps almost after three months of their install.  And, according to a recent report released from Google, 25 percent of apps are used just once before being made redundant. In an another recent Mobile Customer Retention Report it is found that the Average App Loses more than 75% Of Its users right next day. And, according to this data we can say that one of the biggest challenges among Appreneurs is – “Mobile app engagement”. Poor app engagement and retention rates have become recipe for the failure of any app. Hence the challenge of developing a user-centric mobile app is increasing with time and it’s beyond app development stage. Building a mobile app and publishing it to the app store is just the beginning. Once a mobile app is developed, the prime focus should be to motivate as many app users as possible. And, to increase the retention rate, increase in the monetization opportunities is required and an app should be boosted in the app charts as well. An Appreneurs key focus is to maximize the mobile app retention rates and convert their first-time users into long term app users. So, being an app entrepreneur, you must be looking for the effective ways on how to encourage app users and re-engage them with the app. Let’s take a look at a few top strategies on how to Increase mobile app engagement and retention rates:

  1. Create value

If an app does not create any value to its users, then it’s of no use to build an app. If your app is not capable of enticing users and retaining them, then it’s of no use to invest tine and money on your app. Being an app entrepreneur, you want to see your mobile app topping the charts and earning lots and lots of downloads. And, for establishing loyal users and retaining them for longer interval of time, you need to create an app that brings value and revenue to your business. So, to make your app user-centric and revenue generating; you need to ask yourself a few questions including – why should users keep using your app? What are the features that your competitor app has and what makes them glued with your app? Why should users choose your app over your competitor’s app? Does your app have the capability to bring enough value to your users so that they can keep coming back and use it over and over again?

And, if you get the answers to these questions you are on the right track. Always remember that people don’t use those apps, which doesn’t bring value and make life easier.

  1. Engage your users

Engaging your users through different channels is one of the best ways of increasing user retention. And, if it’s done properly, you can get right returns on your efforts. Let’s discuss a couple of ways that can help you engage with your users and keep your app on top of the AppStores and among users.

– Emails:

Email campaigns are one of the most preferred ways adopted by marketers and publishers. You can send out weekly or monthly newsletters, email them notifying about new feature rollouts, campaigns, discounts, promotions, news, latest versions and upgrades you are working on. It’s not necessary that your all approaches and updates are liked by users. So, it’s a hit and try method and you need to try the different approaches and measure results to see what will work best for your app.

– Push Notifications:

Push notifications is one of the proven methods of increasing mobile app engagement among users and bringing them back. By simply and strategically pushing messages within your app you can make users remind that they have installed your app or motivate them to take specific actions. If implemented properly, it can encourage users to use your app and through the targeted messages based on behavioral data and preferences, you can send alerts and notifications about the latest updates and new versions. The entire idea here is to send the targeted and smart messages to your users, thus, providing them a viable and compelling reason to return to your app. But, Push notification is something that needs to be carefully watched out, though. As overdoing push notifications or sending out irrelevant messages to users can make them annoyed and you may feel like spam, thus resulting in deletion of your app. So, you need to carefully understand a thin line between reminding users about your app and spamming them to a point because it may lead to deletion of your app.

Part2 of “How to Increase Mobile App Engagement?” will be released soon in our next blog.

5 Amazing Apps That Make New Moms Life Easier

5 Amazing Apps That Make New Moms Life Easier

For everyone their mothers have been their pillars since day one because they’ll always make us believe that they have all the answers to all our challenges, and never hesitate from being the quintessence of strength and pliability. Being a new mother is no child’s play as you have to learn bundles of new things to learn for your new-born baby. The recipe to being an amazing and good mother doesn’t require any book, movie or philosophy because they can’t define the strategy to become a good mother. So, to help you make your motherhood and chaotic lives a bit easier, we have amalgamated a list of few apps for new moms that they should have on their Smartphones and tablets so that they don’t miss a single special moment and can save themselves from frequently making midnight calls to their pediatricians.

Total Baby (available on both iOS and Android)

This app is for all first-time mothers. It helps in keeping track of every single piece of newborn’s care, including feedings, sleeping hours, bath times, immunizations, doctor visits and more. It includes a four-way process –

  1.     Records every single piece of child’s care through smart interfacing.
  2.     Offers features like a built-in summary, timeline and other 15 interactive charts that help you know your child’s daily routine and schedule.
  3.     Provides automatic back-up data that can be synced to cloud and with other devices.
  4.     And, provides a feature through which other family members can be invited and connected so that child’s activities can be tracked closely.

NuuNest (available on both iOS and Android)

NuuNest provides a new and unique way of maintaining baby records. It helps you in providing all the relevant and tailored information regarding new-born babies. It also helps in offering links to various studies and books, which in turn, assure credibility to their facts. Through this app, user can record things like baby’s weight and number of breastfeeding sessions for the day, so that user always knows what to do and what not to do. An app is categorized conveniently into main section-heads and branches, so that you can know what to click on for tips and advice in the moments of emergency.

Sprout Baby (available on iOS)

Sprout Baby is a perfect app for tracking and planning. It comes with a Feeding Tracker, Growth Tracker, Pumping Tracker, M.D. Visit Planner, Diaper Change Tracker, Sleep Tracker and an Immunization and Medication Tracker. One of the key features of this app is – user can create profiles for more than one child, which is amazing for new mothers especially for those who have more other children. It even allows users to track milestones and memories by using short texts, which can later be easily transformed into an e-book that your family can have forever!

Wonder Weeks (available on iOS and Android)

This app is based on over 35 years of research and includes every aspect of mental and physical milestone development that your baby will go through in the first couple of months. It also includes daily reminders with easy and user-friendly language.

DayOne (available on iOS)

DayOne literally helps in making memories since from the Day One of your baby. Being a photo-driven and user-friendly app, it allows you to add captions, longer journal entries, tags and keywords to all your pictures and images. It helps in recording the journey of your little one and helps you in tracking their growth up every day. It helps you in exporting all your entries into a PDF and printing e-books for covering all your unique and different memories. It has an amazing voice recognition feature which lets you add entries while nursing.