Parth Patel, 20 studying B. Pharm from Nirma University, Ahmedabad has established his own business venture called www.drugneed.com, an online shopping site exclusively for OTC medicines and cosmetics. Parth realized a few gaps in the industry especially with the marketing of the small and medium enterprises (SME). His site focuses on removing these gaps.
The Ahmedabad Blog: How did the idea of DrugNeed.com come up? What motivated the start up?
Parth Patel: In India there are 2 to 3 million SME’S many of which are based on the health care sector. These SME’s provide very good quality products however their distribution channel is weak due to which they are not able to market their products well. We help these companies to expand their distribution channel and to make their product available nationwide. Also we promote their product and increase consumer awareness. There was a need of the health care sector to be digitalised. When DrugNeed.com was first launched there was no other similar website, hence I can say that we were the first and we are the leaders.
The Ahmedabad Blog: How is the website different from those in your category?
Parth Patel: At DrugNeed.com we provide an average 200 varieties of products in each category which is not possible if you visit a physical store. 90% of the products are from small businesses which are not available in the physical stores.
Consumers have become very smart, their shopping style and their behaviour have evolved in a way that they have a specific choice of what exactly they want. Most importantly, brands that are locally based need much more promotion for nationwide sale, which may not be possible and hence that is where we come into the picture. Also the customers get the products at less than market prices due to direct dealing with the company.
The Ahmedabad Blog: Briefly can you explain us the working of the website?
Parth Patel: The company is already selling over 10,000 products and is associated with more than 1,000 companies.
Special design model called the ‘vendor model’ or the ‘drop shipment model’ in which the sellers can keep a check on the products sold, offer schemes, change the MRP, product information etc. Hence the site is continually changing and it is ‘live’. Also we ensure complete transparency on both sides of user and seller. The company can see what orders are coming to the site and dispatch it directly. So the deal is faster and ensures more commission for the seller. Also we don’t have to maintain any inventory as the delivery is direct.
The Ahmedabad Blog: What are the challenges faced by the website?
The biggest challenge is the of the payment gateways. In India, consumers are not ready to pay through the internet due to problems like counterfeit and hence a safe and secure payment method is the need of the moment. Also the courier services provided are not up to the market which may lead to delay in delivery.
The Ahmedabad Blog:You are currently studying and at the same time managing your website. So how do you manage?
Parth Patel: It is not that difficult. You see I have a staff of 25 people who share a common vision. So my employees are continually working for reaching the goals set. My presence is not required just a follow up is essential.
The Ahmedabad Blog:Why did you decide to set your business in Ahmedabad?
Parth Patel: Ahmedabad has grown a lot silently for the past few years as far as the IT Sector is concerned. Also I have a huge family based in Ahmedabad so work is easier here.
The Ahmedabad Blog:What advice would you like to give to the fellow entrepreneurs?
Parth Patel: They must have a plan for life, set a goal and keep working towards it. And of course work hard, as there is no other option to working hard.
About the Author:
Radhika Patel is Bachelor of Pharmacy student from Nirma University. She loves reading and is a fan of fictional books. She is an enthusiastic girl with a flair for writing.
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