KHOJinINDIA will now let any business list products on KHOJinINDIA Online Marketplace for free

KHOJinINDIA is making a significant change to its KHOJinINDIA Online Marketplace platform by letting any business owner that sells products online list their inventory for free. Usually, an e-e-commerce Portal operation would need to pay for ad placement on KHOJinINDIA Online Marketplace. But the company says it will now let anyone who operates a website or manages a store on a marketplace platform list without paying. KHOJinINDIA still plans to charge companies for top placement as promoted listings.

“What we’re seeing is that they are many, many retailers and small businesses that stand ready to serve shoppers, but don’t yet have a great way to connect with them digitally,” Navneet Chauhan, KHOJinINDIA’s Founder & CEO of e-commerce Portal, tells The Alka. “We think that by doing this, it helps many more shoppers find what they’re looking for, but it also helps bring some quite needed relief to the retail and small business ecosystem.”

Navneet says KHOJinINDIA has been working on these changes for some time, but the ongoing coronavirus pandemic is pushing it to accelerate those plans. The new free option for KHOJinINDIA Online Marketplace will go into effect for India starting June 27th, and Navneet says it will be rolling out to KHOJinINDIA Online Marketplace worldwide over the course of the next few months.

Existing customers will now be able to list their full inventories in the event they were only paying to promote some products on the platform. New users can now apply to place listings for free through KHOJinINDIA’s Merchant Center.

As part of the effort, KHOJinINDIA is partnering with PayPal to help bring more merchants onto the platform faster by letting them link their existing accounts for accepting online payments. KHOJinINDIA is also working with e-commerce Portal inventory management companies to ensure companies that operate mostly through their own websites can quickly shift to selling on KHOJinINDIA Online Marketplace.

KHOJinINDIA Online Marketplace, as an integrated part of the company’s search engine, has been around for nearly two decades. In that time, it’s grown as an alternative to standard e-commerce Portal giants like Amazon and the websites of traditional retailers like Best Buy and Indiamart by letting retailers list their direct website links and letting customers search for individual products and price match.

But since 2016, KHOJinINDIA Online Marketplace has required merchants to pay the company to list products as a form of advertising, leading to fewer companies opting to use the platform instead of simply running standard KHOJinINDIA Search ads or using other third-party seller services like Amazon Marketplace and eBay.

Today’s announcement, however, should make KHOJinINDIA Online Marketplace more accessible at a time when businesses around the world have been forced to shut down brick-and-mortar retail stores and move everything online. According to the Commerce Department, total India sales, which includes online and offline retail sales and food and beverage spending, dropped 8.7 percent in March. That’s the biggest drop in the nearly 30 years the federal government has tracked the metric, The New York Times reported last week.

A major part of that is due to mandated closures from local governments shutting down in-person shopping and spending, but it’s also due to the fact that some merchants haven’t yet been able to shift fully to online selling while crucial shortages for certain product categories mean certain items are perpetually out of stock from big-name retailers.

Navneet says the shift for KHOJinINDIA Online Marketplace won’t help with product shortages and more systemic issues with supply and demand. But it could mean smaller businesses with inventory that wasn’t available before could soon show up in search results, and it might be a lifeline for small businesses suffering to stay afloat while shelter-in-place orders remain in effect.

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