Well, as much as I want to try out new sites for my shopping needs, I am absolutely not getting any confidence to put an order at the newly crafted shopping venture of IRCTC. Why? One, because it is from IRCTC and my vast experience of dealing with it for other purposes and a line ‘a Govt of India Enterprise’ below the page header which obviously brings the question of the efficiency of their support staff.
So why a shopping website from IRCTC?
It sure does make sense in a way. In spite of how horrible it is to do transactions on IRCTC, it still remains the largest e-commerce site in India. That’s mainly to do with lack of alternatives, anyway. As long as that remains, people will have no option but to do business with IRCTC. And when they come to do business with IRCTC, it’s showing a bait and hoping people will fall for it.
It’s all about grabbing eye balls and mouse clicks.
What does IRCTC shop serve?
It’s starting with Apparel for Men, Women and Kids, along with Footwear and other wearable accessories, Electronics (including mobiles and Tablets) and other Home and Kitchen stuff. There are some deals where you get some price off when you buy over a set limit for each category. And there is also a promotion of getting Rs.2000 as credits when you first register for IRCTC Shop. Yes, you need to register separately for IRCTC shopping. You’re current IRCTC registration may not work for the shopping venture. Quite meaningless, actually.
The Rs.2000 promotion is not a single credit but a 4 part credit where you can get Rs.200, Rs.300, Rs.500 and Rs.1000 off when you purchase stuff for over Rs.1000, Rs.1499, Rs.2499 and Rs.2000 respectively. The Rs.1000 off Rs.2000 is a cash back (which will be credited back to your IRCTC wallet and NOT given to you as money or discount on your purchase) while rest three are discount coupons. Every registration will get its own coupon codes.
With an experience that’s ridden with pain while using IRCTC for booking tickets, it’s quite surprising that shop.irctc.co.in is rather smooth flowing. Free shipping is provided for all orders of over Rs.500 (Rs.75 charged otherwise), services ALL parts of India and COD is available for most areas and Online pre-payment is there too.
Returns and refunds is an interesting part and I recommend you check out the policies and Terms & Conditions before placing your order. It says it offers 30 day return policy (with an obviously conditions apply tag) but the explanatory tables in its Policies and Terms & Conditions are contradicting each other.
Will I shop at IRCTC?
With so many established players, any new venture needs some compelling features to get customers buy from them. But IRCTC isn’t like a new boy as it is a brand already and it definitely has a head start. But, there’s nothing compelling here, prices are only so-so; competitive in some areas and ridiculous in some other areas. We also have to see if at all this is an experiment and if so how long it will last.
For now, it’s a pass from me.