To nurture his traditional family business of sarees, Flipkart Seller Mehul Jain wove the threads of digital commerce into its very fabric. With Flipkart, Mehul expanded his reach from Surat, Gujarat to all corners of India, achieving 10X growth in just 5 years. Read on to know how he leverages The Big Billion Days sale to thrive, and his ambitious plans to grow his team.
Famous for its thriving textile sector, Surat, Gujarat is home to many manufacturers running legacy businesses, and one among them is helmed by Flipkart seller Mehul Jain. Introduced to fabrics and prints right from childhood, he spent a year learning the ropes of his father’s saree business at just 17 years of age.
“In my family – everyone is into business. My family has been doing business for 3 to 4 generations,” says Mehul. Putting off his plans for post-graduation to grow his family business, this Flipkart seller knew that revitalizing his father’s legacy meant thinking out of the box.
Read on to know how Mehul empowered his traditional family business with technology, using digital commerce to not just sustain but grow his family enterprise from strength to strength.
A 50-year business legacy
I am Mehul Jain, a Flipkart seller from Surat. I run the e-commerce side of my family business from Surat, Gujarat. My father started this saree business in his youth and today our company is almost 50 years old. I introduced our traditional business to digital commerce to give new shape to it and capitalize on opportunities just like my father did.
When he started out, Shagun Creations was into the gray garment business where we bought raw material for sarees and printed them for sale to wholesalers. At the time, we were a B2B business only. In fact, my father still runs that side of the business, though we have grown and got into manufacturing ourselves.
Fueling success with digital commerce
I became a Flipkart seller in 2017, and the onboarding process was very smooth. When we started, it was just the 2 of us – my cousin and I. At first, we used to get only 40 to 50 orders, going up to 100. Our monthly revenue was ₹5 lakh-10 lakh. But with time, we began to be recognized as a brand.
My father has always told me that our business will last longer if we take care of quality. That’s what we have been doing. We made our quality checks stronger and now we have a dedicated team member for addressing customer feedback and QC. We dispatch products only after thorough checks and try to offer value for money.
Today, our monthly revenue is ₹1 crore from the Flipkart platform, and we have come a long way in the last 5 years. And with the increase in demand, we have increased our team strength too. We have a 10-member team today and will hire more people next year. We have been able to build a positive work environment for all. Since e-commerce work can also be managed from home, we give our employees the opportunity to work from home too.
To become more competitive in the crowded marketplace of ethnic wear, we not only offer sarees, but kurtas and co-ords too. To capture a new market, we are focusing on designer sarees and even branching out into western wear. We have just set up stitching units for this in Surat itself.
BBD as a catalyst
This year, we participated in our 6th BBD as Flipkart sellers! Normally we receive 800 to 1000 orders but during The Big Billion Days Sale, we plan to get at least twice the inventory ready. We started preparing 3 months in advance this year and saw a 3X growth in orders, sending around 2,500 deliveries a day.
When I was new to e-commerce, I relied on Flipkart’s account managers for pretty much everything from product listing to advertising during this sale. Flipkart’s seller portal is also very helpful. The team helped us understand where our orders come from, so we can design our inventory as per trends in those regions.
With our online business, we are able to access customers all over India. This helps in creating brand value. Overall, the growth in online business is 10X, so my advice to manufacturers is to waste no time to tap into growth by becoming Flipkart sellers!
To read more stories of #SellfMade Flipkart sellers like Mehul, click here.