With 7M active ads, TheGoodDeal.in throws down the gauntlet in the classified ad segment
The OLX CRUST (Consumer Research on Used-Goods and Selling Trends) survey for 2014-15 reveals that Urban Indian households are holding Rs 56,200 crore worth of unused goods. The market size of the Indian classified industry is Rs 200 crore. The combined success of Quikr and OLX shows the potential of the classified ad segment.
In the segment of ‘known classified ad sites’, including OLX and Quikr, TheGoodDeal.in, a part of the Padawan group, is now a big player. In July, 2014, Alexandre Balkany and Mithias Millin co-founded the TheGoodDeal.in, which currently hosts around seven million active ads on its website.
The idea behind the website was conceived some years ago. Alexandre and Mithias, both love to collect Star Wars memorabilia. They have been doing it for years. In search of these collectibles, to add to their collections, they turned to online classified sites, but soon became frustrated with the haphazardness of these sites. That’s when the business idea was born. They decided to launch a classified site that would be able to provide sellers a way of showcasing everything they had for resale.
Their classified portal is a platform to buy, sell, or rent second-hand goods in India. Their business process has three distinct stages -content acquisition, traffic acquisition and monetization.
According to Rupesh Kumar, Country Manager, TheGoodDeal.in, “In less than a year, we have managed to position ourselves as a leader in terms of content. In traffic acquisition, we are currently driving the traffic to the website via the following channels: PPC, SEO, aggregators and direct acquisition. The stage of monetization will be the next step. The revenue model will be based on premium listing on the site. Advertising revenue comes from diverse categories such as Loans, Insurance, Matrimonial, Real Estate.”
The website design is very user-friendly. To ensure ease of use, they have created a showcase feature which is free to both individuals and merchants. The showcase is a really eye-catching and fully customizable online storefront. It even shows the value of stock that an individual has generated. Additionally, it provides straightforward social media integration. “It takes three quick clicks to share your showcase, your new items, and your favorite items, with your Facebook friends and your Twitter followers. We know that people would prefer to sell their items to people they already know and trust, and our sharing feature allows them to do that,” says Rupesh.
Investment and funding
The venture was self-funded by the two co-founders Alexandre and Mithias. They started the venture with an initial investment of 11 million pounds. The money was primarily spent on the development of the classified sites in 22 countries, and setting up the technical, sales and marketing teams.Investors are still showing interest in the vision of the Padawan Group. In India, TheGoodDeal.in is making efforts to collaborate with different partners to invest in the Indian market.
Taking on challenges
Amidst well positioned competitors like OLX and Quikr, the company is facing a stiff challenge to pitch the product in the Indian market.
TheGoodDeal.in is working to establish its market in the Tier 1 and 2 cities.
During March, the venture observed around 94 % M-o-M increase in the number of visitors. The website has been getting about 15% M-o-M increase in the number of sold items.
“The interaction between sellers and buyers will increase exponentially as soon as we start the main media campaigns in India, leading naturally to the monetization phase. At the moment we generate revenue from advertising only; primarily from Adsense, Criteo and other affiliate deals. This ad revenue increased by 147% in March compared to February, which is really positive at this stage,” says Rupesh.
However, to prepare for the monetization phase, it is currently liaising with various call centres based in India.
Finally, Rupesh underlines their key strategies for Indian market, “The objective is to use the same strategy in India as we did in other countries. The strategy is to call merchants who have already advertised on the website, and offer them some package options to increase their visibility on the website. This strategy has been successful so far in the countries where we started. Merchants seem to be keen to buy extra visibility on the websites, going for a 6 or12 month contract, which is really positive at this stage. Also, as the classified market is growing in India, we are looking for a huge amount of paid listings that will monetize our traffic when we collaborate with other classified verticals.”