Leading e-commerce sites like Flipkart and Snapdeal may claim to be offering huge discounts but a closer look at the discounts and it is a different story. The same e-retailers that claim to be the leading online shopping destination in India are not providing any great shopping experience by putting up fake discounts on fake MRPs.
There have been many instances in the past and the recent one came to light when a single product was put up for sale on different shopping platforms at equally different price range. On Flipkart homepage, they are running a promotion of Flat 90% off on some trimmers. Nova NHT 1060 is one of the models in “flat 90% off” sale. The MRP of this model on Flipkart is put at 1995. The same product is priced at Snapdeal for Rs 995 and at PayTm at Rs 699. Although each website cater to their own pricing as per the discount they are providing, but the retail price of the same product in retail stores is said to be close to the discounted price (Rs 220). So while the Flipkarts and Snapdeals may claim to be offering a huge 70-90 per cent discount, that is not the case. Flipkart and other e-com sites are offering these fictitious discounts and are trying to fool the customers. Even the most tech-savvy people could also fall for this fraud online. It is completely irresponsible of Flipkart and other sites to mislead customers in this manner. There should be some government authority monitoring such internet scams. Customers are easily influenced by discounts as they see a bargain opportunity. So when they come across such huge discounts, at times they end up buying the product by shelling out more money than what the actual product’s MRP.
Why does Flipkart have to mislead consumers? Is this their model of their frantic growth? This pricing scam is nothing but leading to customer dissatisfaction. This is nothing but an act of misleading the customers. This is not the first time that Flipkart has tried these cheap tactics. In the past Flipkart had a shaky experience when one of their biggest shopping sale the Big Billion Day sale backfired. Flipkart’s “Big Billion Day” on October 6, 2014 attracted a lot of online shoppers with steep discounts, crazy deals and lucky draws on a range of products. It boomeranged as website crashed and there were price manipulations which were cited by customers on social media accusing the website.But later Flipkart apologized to the consumers for the inconvenience.
The Confederation of All India Traders cried foul and urged the commerce ministry to regulate the e-retail business, look into their trade practices, which they alleged were not exactly as per rules, and create a level-playing field. But with time the matter died down. Overall e-commerce players should offer a transparent pricing in terms of MRP and discounting – otherwise customers will lose faith in buying products online.