In one of the biggest sales days in Indian online retail market, Flipkart and Snapdeal on Monday sold products worth an estimated Rs 600 crore each even as customers complained about technical glitches, while global e-retailer Amazon continued its own pre-Diwali campaign.
Flipkart claimed it sold products worth $100 million (over Rs 600 crore) within 10 hours, while Snapdeal pegged its sales at Rs 1 crore a minute-which translates into a figure similar to Filpkart's. There was no sales figures from Amazon which is running a three-day discount campaign.
"We got a billion hits on our site today and achieved our 24 hour sales target of USD 100 million in GMV (gross merchandise value) in just 10 hours," Flipkart co-founders Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal said in a joint statement.
Sale on Flipkart started at 8 am and most of the products under scheme were sold by afternoon.
"The Big Billion Day is an unprecedented day for us as this is the biggest sale ever in India. With a range of exciting offers on quality products at disruptive prices available throughout the sale period, we have created history in Indian e-commerce," the joint statement said.
"Snapdeal had a record breaking day of sales on October 6, 2014. We witnessed sales of over a crore rupees a minute, with lakhs of products being sold in a single day," its Co-founder and CEO Kunal Bahl said.
Customers, however, complained of technical glitches and slow response on Flipkart website. They took to social media websites to express their dismay over the performance of the Flipkart website during the sale scheme.
Some customers complained that they did not receive their order details despite paying for the product they bought.
"Our technology team has been dedicated towards addressing errors and providing constant support to accommodate the largest scale of traffic and customer visits e-commerce has witnessed across the country," the Flipkart statement said.
The company offered huge discount on mobile phones, consumer electronics, gold coins and other merchandise products.
Under the sale, Flipkart offered Nokia 1020 at Rs 19,999 which is about 60 per cent less than its launch price.
Similarly, the company offered heavy discounts on books. Some products were on offer at discount of over 90 per cent. Meanwhile, traders body CAIT while expressing concerns over huge discounts being offered by e-commerce firms asked the Commerce and Industry Ministry to take steps to monitor and regulate online businesses.
"We invoke your kind and immediate attention to ongoing sale offers conducted by various e-commerce companies since last three days...they are offering discounts from 20 per cent to 70 per cent, whereas traders are forced to sell same products in offline markets at a higher prices since their purchase price is on a very higher side," National General Secretary of Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) Praveen Khandelwal said.
Both Flipkart and Snapdeal had taken out advertisements on large scale to publicise their campaign. Snapdeal took a dig at Flipkart's one day scheme with its tagline-"For others it's a big day. For us, today is no different".
Snapdeal claimed it sold 10 products per second across categories between October 3 and October 5 but did not disclose the total sales value.
The company claimed it sold a smartphone every 6 seconds, laptop every 20 seconds, tablet every 30 seconds, saree every 30 second, a pair of footwear every 10 seconds etc.
"We saw a great wave of enthusiasm from the shoppers and have witnessed a spectacular growth of over 100 per cent in sales across categories in a short period of time. While categories like Fashion and Electronics continued to deliver record sales, the results of other categories like Home Decor and Furnishings have beaten our expectations as well," snapdeal.com Senior Vice President Sandeep Komaravelly said.