destination india

Friday, December 02, 2005

home delivery

This is a modern day marketing gimmick that is gradually changing the very concept of the customer-supplier relationship. Pizzas are delivered right into your drawing room within half an hour – if delivered later than the prescribed limit, you are entitled to a full refund. How is it done? Well, from whatever little knowledge is available to me, I believe that delivery boys with two wheelers are scattered in the large metros – they have provisions of stocking a limited variety of the products. It seems there are two containers - one for hot stuffs, like pizzas and the other for cold ones like ice creams. All these boys are linked to their local supplier via mobile phones. Once the supplier of a neighborhood receives a request, he locates the boy nearest to the address and asks him to deliver the product. It he has it in stock, fine; if not, the supplier arranges to make it ready and the boy has to rush and collect it for prompt delivery.

Introduction of this form of aggressive marketing has come as a boon to many of these delivery boys – it guarantees good income, plus commission. The tips that he pockets are added incentives.

This method is gradually spreading to other areas like the cinema halls and the railways – tickets will come to you, you have to pay the service charges. Even the local grocers have accepted this system – all you need to do is to hand over the list of your requirements and he arranges delivery into your kitchen. You do not have to waste your valuable time jostling with others on the counter. Of course, you lose out on comparing different varieties of the products, you also have to forego adding new items to the list once your gaze falls on new arrivals that offer discounts or ‘FREE’ knick-knacks. And, more importantly, you lose out on the personal touch and the one-to-one contact; things are becoming too predictable, too stereotyped.

Yes, the monthly quota of groceries is a must to any household but so is the monthly quota of goodwill.

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