Though online shopping has indefinite advantages, many users still miss wandering around and indulging in “window shopping". We were approached by one such site called Sweetcouch.com that aims at providing a “window shopping” experience right at the comfort of your couch. In an attempt to create a window shopping place, the site comes with a Pinterest-like interface (similar to TheFancy.com), showing large image thumbnails of several products. Just hover over the product image and you will see options to buy it instantly or add it to your wishlist of products that you plan to buy later. Sweetcouch has been live for the past six months, but it was launched in January for public. And in the past one month, approximately 2.5 million products were viewed on Sweetcouch, claims the site.
Sweetcouch – A window shopping site
Sweetcouch comes across as the clone of TheFancy.com, with a similar layout and concept. However, anyone attempting to make a window shopping place, or a place to browse through beautiful pictures, may end up with a similar looking interface. We came across another similar looking desi site called Clipr.in, which is a personalised magazine of products for window shopping and gift recommendations.
Sweetcouch is at the forefront for all the products on display. Once you choose to buy a product, the link takes you to the site that is selling the product. Right now, the company has no revenue model, but this may change in future depending upon the number of users it manages to attract.
Sweetcouch – mobile website
Jayshree from Sweetcouch tells us, “There is no dearth of good products in India and this is spread across all online shops, not just the biggies like Flipkart, Jabong, Myntra etc. Sweet Couch is a neutral, unbiased showcase of products from all online shops, brands and independent designers. We do not sell anything. We also do not charge online shops, brands and independent sellers anything to showcase their products. No one is given any preferential treatment. We let the best product win. The most popular product is chosen by users.”
Right now, sites like Sweetcouch are for a niche audience and not everyone can relate to it. But, this may change in future with a larger audience opting for online shopping. Moreover, such sites are more appealing on a mobile platform. Fancy is one of the most downloaded apps on the Google Play store. Sweetcouch doesn’t have any mobile app yet, but its mobile site has an app-like feel and experience.
The e-commerce space in India has grown tremendously. As per Google report, online shopping has grown by a whopping 128 percent in the year 2011-12 as compared to 40 percent in the year 2010-11. While books and electronics have been among the top selling products, people are even buying products like apparels, shoes and accessories without fretting. In fact, e-commerce is expected to see major growth in the year 2013. In the coming years, there will be innumerous shopping portals to choose from. And this is when we will find the need for sites that bring best products under one roof. This is when sites like Sweetcouch or other aggregator or gifting sites will be able to cash in using the revenue model.