Click to buy. No, not with your mouse!

Flipkart introduces #FlipkartImageSearch, a cool new way to shop

Enough has been said about how the Internet has changed our lives. But the thing is, Internet is not yet done with changing our lives. There are millions of people out there, far from the city crowds, who are yet to come face to face with the endless possibilities introduced by the Internet.

Punit Soni (CPO, Flipkart), speaking at the Flipkart IndiBlogger Meet held recently in Bangalore, said that most of these people are now getting exposed to the idea of online shopping. Their window to the world of Internet? the ubiquitous mobile phone.
As per Punit, a great majority of the Internet traffic in India is now flowing through the mobile phones. Even in areas that are far from cities, away from facilities that the urban population thinks as necessities, the mobile phone is leading a silent revolution. A revolution to give information to people. A revolution that presents new possibilities.

Possibility of buying the products of their choice is just one of these. And that, for Flipkart, is an opportunity.

In pursuit of this opportunity, Flipkart is betting big on the app (recall the rumors that Flipkart will soon be an app-only store like Myntra? That rumor was neither confirmed nor denied at the meet). In addition to providing additional discounts and offers for app purchases, Flipkart is also adding some cool new options to its mobile app.

One such option is the new 'Image Search'. Greatly enhancing the search capabilities available in the app, this feature lets customers easily find and buy fashion products, by just clicking the image of what they want. Be it the shirt that a friend has, or the dress worn by some star in a movie, or even a pair of sunglasses that you saw in some poster - you can just click a picture, and search for similar items on Flipkart. What's more, you can also upload a photo that you found somewhere to search for the fashion product of your choice. To summarize, it is as simple as using the 'Search by Image' option in Google (Trivia: Flipkart's CPO is from Google too!).

If clicking an image to use for your search, for better results, you should ensure that the subject is well-lit. And also understand that you may not always find the exact match to what is on the photo (e.g. if you click a blue Skybags backpack, you will see a whole bunch of blue backpacks that need not necessarily be from the Skybags brand). Also, after uploading the image, you need to help the app by selecting the category of products (e.g. clothing, accessories etc).

During the IndiBlogger meet, we tried out this feature, and I should say the performance was impressive. Now you go check it out!


After the main event, I got a chance to talk to Punit and asked him a few questions. My point was simple: when you say that the next millions of Internet users will come from outside the urban areas, you should make sure that they get access to content easily - and in their own language. Unfortunately, we are not seeing much being done in this direction. Punit acknowledged this point, and said that the point was noted. Hope to see more and more importance given to regional languages in future - not just by Flipkart!

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