Protection, safety, security and wellbeing we all look for it, sometimes for ourselves and sometimes for the things we possess. We are constantly on the lookout for products that act as a safety barrier for us and our gadgets. When you spend a fortune on buying something, you are ready to shell out a quarter of it to make sure you keep it in one piece for a long time. Besides our gadgets, now is the time when moving out without proper protection measures for our own selves is highly required. SafetyKart is the first and the only e-commerce portal dedicated exclusively to safety products in India. It provides us with a range of safety products available globally via online shopping. Finding this rather interesting, Startoholics met up with Harshal Agarwal, the Chief Operating Officer, for a rendezvous.
To anyone who’s never come across SafetyKart, how would you describe it?
We are about protection and Prevention! We aspire to make high quality safety products easily accessible to the Indian community Online. We believe that the products we bring to our customers can really make a difference for them – save their lives when all else fails, and keep their expensive gadgets safe when it matters. We believe that the products we have and introduce have the potential to do all the above and more to help them lead a better, safer life. We believe in bringing in a mindset shift of leading a life of adventure while at the same time ensuring safety of our loved ones and our investments wherever possible and minimizing our risks
What do you wish you’d known when you became COO?
I wish I knew more about designing and development of a website. I mean coding. I’m from an economics background. You can learn all the SEO and SMO but Coding is a different ball game altogether and opens a lot of channels for you to innovate.
What are you most excited about at the moment?
I’m excited at the fact that the Internet today is making everything so transparent. Everything is vulnerable and nothing can be hidden. If your service is poor, people will speak about it no matter how classily you try to conceal the truth. So it levels the playground for everyone. The biggies cannot get ahead anymore just by outspending the startups. You really need to bring value to the table or you’ll be exposed. So it creates a platform where it’s a necessity to innovate and engage with our audience and that too authentically. People will know if you’ve hired someone else to be your voice on the social media.
What is the biggest hurdle you have faced or are still facing?
The biggest hurdle we’re facing and I think it’s the same issue for everyone is the Logistics. You just can’t get around the broken logistics in India unless you have your own. That is why companies like Flipkart & Jabong have succeeded in providing a greater satisfaction level by creating and operating their own Logistics.
Has SafetyKart got the feedback and growth you expected since launch?
We believe that our products and our market are very niche segments. People don’t really care about being proactive about their safety as much as they care about getting their hands on the next Smartphone; especially in Northern India. But we have had great response from Southern India and we have been adapting to focus on target markets to maximize our ROIs and response has been great so far. Some of our products are exceptionally innovative and have received amazing feedbacks. For instance – LifeStraw Water Filter.
How do you differentiate from your competitors?
First and foremost, we bring a range of innovative products to the market that isn’t available anywhere else in India and most of these are imported. Safetykart is essentially about bringing anything and everything about safety under one roof and making it available to our customers in a seamless fashion. A one stop destination for all your safety needs. We back this with a solid customer service team wherein we ensure our customers have a great experience shopping with us. We are trying and creating a lot of meaningful content every day to build relevance and create awareness about safety.
Do you have any tie-ups?
We are the exclusive distributors for Pelican ProGear Products in India. We tie up with Playschools as their safety partner for child safety. We have partnered with photographic communities like Jas Fotography, Indian School of Photography for Gadget Safety. We have also partnered with adventure sport communities like Adventure18.
What one piece of advice would you give to soon to be startup founders?
Find a problem, create an effective solution and work relentlessly to make it happen. Be authentic and original in what you bring to the table.
While SafetyKart has a range of interesting products to choose from, the one section that caught my eye was ‘Personal Safety’. I’m certainly ordering one Bodyguard for myself! Now if it’s a hunk like Salman Khan or something else that I am talking about, you’ll figure out once you visit the website. Till then keep safe and fill your Karts!