Why Cities Today Are Getting Hyper About Hyperlocal

With a startup being one of the most used terms in recent times, it’s time to add a new one to the vocabulary: hyperlocal. In layman terms, hyperlocal is essentially mobile commerce that comprises firms thriving on technology in order to connect local retailers with consumers in a particular area. Though at a nascent stage, Mumbai has seen a handful of hyperlocal startups slowly spreading its wings. These services are now trending and seem to be giving fierce competition to conventional offline models. This probably explains why e-commerce giants too are foraying into the hyperlocal space. Amazon Kirana is already operational as a pilot in Bengaluru. Paytm has launched Zip mobile app and is testing in Bengaluru, and Ola has started Ola store, a hyperlocal grocery mobile app.

Today ‘curation’ is becoming the new buzzword.

If the US is at the apex of the supermarket experience, then India has become the hub of hyperlocal services as the market segment for these services is quite sizable and no one wants to miss out on the opportunity.

Hyperlocal firms can customize their content and offerings based on the location they are in, as each locality typically houses a certain kind of customer demographic. This helps them create a personal equation with their target audience.

The US$18-billion hyperlocal market lets businesses focus on delivery logistics until the last mile while taking the intra-city logistics out of the equation. This business model also enables retailers to save significantly on marketing and advertising costs, as it is taken care of by the very feature of being local.

From the consumer point of view, there are various factors that are responsible for hyperlocals’ growth spurt. To begin with, the Indian consumer is now accustomed (and how!) to online shopping, thanks to e-commerce companies like Flipkart and Snapdeal that trained the consumer early on. This growing trend of online purchases was highlighted in an Assocham-PWC report that said about 40 million consumers purchased something online last year, and this number is expected to go up to 65 million this year. The other factor is the rapid growth in mobile usage. Mobile users are not just utilising their devices for calls or messaging, they are shopping as well. About 11 per cent of all e-commerce sales are through mobile devices, reports say. And the third and major factor that has contributed to the surge in the hyperlocal user base is convenience. Thanks to the diminishing demand-supply gap in the hyperlocal space, consumers can now access everything from a Starbucks coffee to a horde of other services, right at their doorstep, with just one click. With the transition from offline shopping to online purchases, hyperlocal concepts are redefining the e-world.

Palava Local, a hyperlocal initiative introduced by Palava City Management Association, is a step in the right direction. With citizen services encompassing furniture rentals to a book library, Palava Local is bringing convenience closer to home with its web-based offerings via the city’s My Palava app. As a strategic partner of PCMA, RentoMojo seeks to provide an effortless home furnishing solution. With mobility increasing at a never before rate, spending money on furniture and appliances is unnecessarily expensive and cumbersome to deal with if you need to move from one city to another. With renting, people can design the lifestyle of their choice without the hassles and expenses that are associated with purchase of new goods.

RentoMojo’s rental plans ensure that every house becomes a home without spending a fortune on furniture that may not be needed after a few months. With scrupulous quality checks, free maintenance and installation, and flexible payment options, RentoMojo’s offerings are matched perfectly by PCMA’s efforts to reach every house in the city. The packages start at as low as Rs.799/month and vary in price as well as range to ensure there is something for everyone.

From homeowners looking to sublet their home for rent to tenants hoping to save money by cutting unnecessary costs, RentoMojo is the convenient one-stop solution for everyone. Going hyperlocal with Palava also translates to easy availability of high-quality furniture for the residents as well as access to other local services and products such as home appliances and travel accessories.

In the end, while businesses are drawn to large markets that await prompt services, consumers rate convenience above everything else. This is what has made cities ‘hyper’ about hyperlocal.

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