For customer who shop online regularly, getting cash back from every transaction could save them a huge amount of money. And for the retailer and E-commerce site, they always need to acquire customers. This simple swap constitutes the cornerstone of the cashback industry, and “allows every large E-Commerce economy to have Billion Dollar Cashback sites, like EBATES in the U.S., TopCashback in the UK, and Fanli in China.” said Swati Bhargava, CashKaro’s co-founder.
In India, most cashback and coupon sites were established since 2010. Although there’s not yet a Billion Dollar player in the house, we can still see a handful key player emerged like CashKaro with Mr. Ratan’s invest, CouponDunia own by Times Internet, GrabOn focus on coupon which doesn’t has cash back function. Other participator in the industry including Magicpin which do restaurant cash back, TopCashback’s India subsidiary, Pennyful, PaisaWapas, Gopaisa, etc.
In China, cashback and coupon site start to boom since 2009 along with the E-Commerce industry, there were hundreds of cashback sites in China at 2012. As for leading site Fanli which has 30 mln users and 50,000+ affiliate site now, it catch up and get the leading position after experienced a long “dormant” period. And just recently, Fanli launched a strategy upgrade plan to move from the traditional cashback model to “content community + brand marketing” model, like the famous App Xiaohongshu(RED) in China.
Who would be the next “EBATES/Fanli” in India?
Founded in 2013 by Swati Bhargava and Rohan Bhargava, Cashkaro claimed to have over 3.5 mln registered users and more than 1 million monthly transaction. Also, CashKaro claimed to have cooperate with more than 1500 online websites including Amazon, Snapdeal, Flipkart, Swiggy, Myntra, and many other big names.
According to Swati’s introduction, although the commission fee from different site and different categories varies, CashKaro would make sure 70% of the commission goes to the user as cash back. As for the user acquisition, compares to CouponDunia which acquires 7.5 million user by e-mail subscription, CashKaro acquires users more though social media campaign.
Swati told Volanews that, CashKaro would cooperate with influencers in different cities with different dialects, who would show how to buy and get cash back on CashKaro’s site in the video. And a single download cost around 25 Rupees for CashKaro App, and a register user cost around 12 Rupees in a video cooperation with KOL.
WhatsApp is another important way for CashKaro to do marketing campaign. User can subscribe their SMS message and 70% of the users would open the link in the message, which compares to the 30% open-rate in transitional e-mail campaign.
Under a series of campaign and a new catalogue of bills cash-back, CashKaro experienced a 10 times MoM GMV growth which reached 32 million USD in the last 12 month.
From Cashback to Social E-Commerce App EarnKaro, the key is conversion and retention rate
Among Indian startup entrepreneurs who mostly have background in MIT, Stanford, Google, and Facebook, CashKaro’s Co-Founder Swati and Ratan stood out with a relatively rare Venture Capital background, which gives them a sharp insight to every concept that the venture capital market enthusiastic with.
When Swati introduce their new pipeline EarnKaro launched this year, she came up with two words “Peanut Diary” immediately. Peanut Diary is a focus social E-commerce App with VC funding in China.
From Swati’s view, launching EarnKaro was a natural progression for business since they already have the best retailer relationships in India, a pool of deal savvy members and advanced technology from CashKaro. Currently, with about 6 months of launch, EarnKaro has already reached a monthly GMV of USD 7.2 Mn, having grown 100% on a month on month basis.
EarnKaro is India’s first Social Cashback App that enables users to monetize their network. It allows them to share deals from popular sites such as Amazon and Flipkart with friends and family via platforms like WhatsApp, Telegram, Facebook, etc. and earn profits from the sales made. Moreover, EarnKaro lets users sell products from trusted brands that are being sold on well-known e-commerce sites – there are no self-owned product brands and therefore no conflict of interest.
Using EarnKaro, one can earn anything between Rs. 15,000-30,000 per year, without any capital investment and with completely flexible timings. This brings a large earning opportunity to millions of resellers, housewives, students and many existing users on CashKaro who want to earn a regular income while working from home.
Peanut Diary in China once get a fine of 1.5 million yuan and confiscation of 73.06 million yuan in illegal income because multi-level distribution is illegal in China. Although there is no explicit ban on multi-level distribution in India, EarnKaro currently only has a first-level distribution relationship due to a low commission ratio (about 3%) in electronic products, which Indian user purchased the most. And the fashion FMCG category with a relatively high (about 12%) commission does not account for the mainstream of Indian online shopping.
India is currently the 3rd largest consumer market in the world. The retail market in India is expected to further escalate to USD 1.2 trillion by 2021. After the “Jio Effect”, millions of Indians gained regular access to the internet for the first time due to cheap data tariffs. The number of internet users in India doubled from 2015 to 2019, and is expected to increase to 829 million by 2021. Given E-commerce industry grow at 32% CAGR and expected to reach 150 billion scale by 2021, the whole industry is attracting huge attention. This can be seen also in the huge funding given to FlipKart, Big Masket、Swiggy、Zomato、UrbanClap.
But for cash back site like CashKaro, its real value lies in whether it can achieve high efficiency to partner merchants through its own website, app and various rebate products while acquiring traffic at low cost through various means. Shopping guide. In other words, the value of the latter can only be realized when the partner merchant finds that the efficiency of buying traffic from search engines and social platforms is not as efficient as the shopping guide efficiency achieved through cooperation with shopping guide websites such as CashKaro.
That's why China's Fanli will start to revisit the concept of content community and brand marketing after 13 years. In the Indian market, where the cost of traffic is generally low, whether users can keep a sufficient period of time on their website and form high-frequency repurchase is the core challenge for Swati and CashKaro.
(CashKaro has so far raised a total of $4.6Mn led by Kalaari Capital and Mr Ratan Tata)