Sunday, February 9, 2020

Retailers Digital Pain Killer - BUKU

We all have seen success and efficacy of digital payment wallets and their adoption by Indian retailers. The latest blockbuster is the app based Udhaar bahi khata to maintain daily len-den. 

Offline retail has lapped up basic accounting apps to manage udhaar khata. There are various free generic  apps in market for this purpose which are quite widely used as evident. This took everyone by surprise (atleast I am !! ) 

And our app Buku is our attempt to provide a digital business ledger to maintain udhaar khata in its own simplified manner.

Infact, I would say that this was a great idea lying around unexploited right under the nose until someone learnt app development and developed the app for his father. Absolutely incredible and kudos to the guy!! 

To me, this also has a very important human cognitive psychology angle. And which is the sheer power of a small sms/whatsapp reminder which when sent actually may trigger the recipient to take mental note and bring this pending and otherwise forgotten task in foreground by their brain’s task scheduling algorithm. For the customer, it may just be 50 Rs but for the shopkeeper it is phew!! 50 Rs for 50 people. So the shopkeeper has every reason to be gung-ho for the app if he is able to collect 50 Rs from say 25 people just in time by sending a reminder from these apps. 

We all know that there are still many thick skinned people around and may need many more reminders!! 

Even when we casually discussed this idea internally much earlier (even before GST and Demonitzation era) and approached few neighborhood shopkeepers, we almost always returned with the message that they don’t need it and have this unwavering belief that a meager 10 Rs sale would reach IT department almost instantly.  

So what has changed between then and now. Is it that they are more  
  1. in line with tax compliance's 
  2. they genuinely want to be more organized and optimize time 
  3. the general level of trust with mobile apps is increasing on day to day basis
  4. they are also selling thru more digital channels like online market places etc and are more educated and also their business have scaled up 

Whatever it is, I think it’s good for everyone in the ecosystem. The abundant supply and growing traction/experimentation of various kind of apps from O2O to location based discovery to rewards/loyalty systems to QR code/mobile based digital payments is a testament to the fact that vast Indian retail is embracing tech based solutions with both hands wide open. 

And well yes, this is just the beginning. The pandora’s box just got opened. 
Paytm has just thrown its hat in the ring. The other day there was this news of Reliance gobbling NowFloats is another indicator that even the biggies have sit up and taken note of this large unorganized lifeline of this country (and probably not just this country) and have gone to the drawing board making strategies and plans to get the lion’s share of this hitherto untapped unexplored target market in the making. 

The game is going to get more serious in the time to come. 

In my own weird ways, quite often i try to think of analogies for the use cases being brainstormed. I found this way to be very effective in explaining my point of view or to make my team understand where I am coming from. Not to mention that sometimes it extracts a loud laughter also. Anyways in this case, I was trying to figure out if the udhaar khata is like the tributary river or the main river.  If it's not the main river then what that might be given that the tributary river has emerged first. Just a food for thought!! 

Ok guys, my time is up on this one where I just tried to scratch the surface without doing any deep diving. Would love to receive your feedback. Thanks for staying till ‘The End’ and hope to see you again. 

If you get a chance, download our android app 

(apologies to the apple users, we are coming soon on AppStore)

Its a Udhaar Bahi Khata, Hisaab Kitaab, Expense ledger, Money manager app. Buku is your simplified digital account book to maintain khata and expenses. It is 100% Private and Secure for all types of business ( like retailers/shop keepers /distributors/ stockist/ whole-sellers/ traders/ service providers etc.) as well as personal use.

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