Bengaluru-based online fashion retailer Myntra on Wednesday announced its decision to relaunch its desktop version next month.
"At Myntra, we've always believed in taking bold calls and pushing innovation forward. We tried to do this last year because we thought we can offer consumers a much better experience on the mobile. While that is still true that the mobile experience is far superior to the web, we have recognized that some consumers still want the option to shop on the web and we're humble enough to listen to our customers," Ananth Narayanan, the CEO of Myntra, said in a statement.
A year ago, on May 15, Myntra, a subsidiary of India's leading e-commerce firm, Flipkart, had decided to close down its website operations and go app-only. The company had cited huge growth in smartphone sales and mobile-based shopping as the reasons behind the change.
Many market analysts and shoppers had opined that Myntra's move was ill-conceived and would give rivals an opportunity to consolidate more market share. Early signs that Myntra's app-only move had backfired came within a week of the implementation of the decision. Its sales dipped 10 percent, the Economic Times had reported last year.
"Exclusive App Only strategy is successful for those players which can create platform stickiness through product differentiation and unique offerings. At the moment none of the big Indian ecommerce platform able to score high on consumer loyalty but differentiation is more on discounts than product itself," Naiya added.
Myntra, in a bid to reduce expenses, had minimised discount offers and started charging fee to consumers for delivery of select items despite the order amount being more than the prescribed free-delivery limit.
Now, a year later, the company has realised the blunder it made, and is trying to make amends by relaunching the website next month. With the new move, Myntra expects to touch $1 billion in terms of annual gross merchandise value by the end of March 2017.
However, the company says the desktop version will be less interactive as compared to the mobile app, as the latter is still a major source of revenue.
"Myntra is in a recovery mode now, after having lost more than a year in the App only bargain. It will need to allocate more resources to send the message to its end users about its multiplatform availability. The recent change in the FDI will also force Myntra to rethink of its strategy to sustain in long run," Naiya said to IBT India.