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Going shopping in the new world

A man shopping at a DVD store in New Delhi.


As a child growing up in the 80s, I would listen to music on my cassette player or walkman. If neither of those sounds particularly familiar, well, consider the even stranger aspect of the experience — once the first half of a music album had played, you had to physically open the device & flip over the cassette inside, to be able to listen to the second half!


Indeed, the entire experience of music in general, from production to consumption, has changed drastically in the past three decades. Take the buying aspect for instance. Back in my childhood days, purchasing a music album (you couldn’t buy just a single song) meant going to a music store that would stock audio cassettes. These would be organized quite loosely; in some cases just according to the language — regional, Hindi, or English. If you chose an English album, there was usually no way of knowing if you were going to like the music beforehand since the cassette would be sealed in plastic. You could read reviews in a music magazine if the band were particularly famous, otherwise, you were out of luck.


Some of the popular music streaming apps


Fast forward to today. Now, you can just stream any song on Spotify or gaana or amazon music or a hundred similar apps. Listen as long as you want and maybe purchase it should you really want to ‘own’ it. The concept of streaming, or playing audio or video data being transmitted over a network in real-time, has become the dominant choice of how we consume content. And this content is not just restricted to music or entertainment.


In a post COVID world, everything from school classes to office meetings is happening over real-time video streams. A curious laggard in this regard has been retail purchases. Not since Amazon entered and disrupted retail, have brands changed their way of reaching out to customers. But websites and webstores are no longer sufficient. Ratings & reviews, the strongest indicators of product quality, are now suspect.


Product images are no longer as trustworthy as before. It seems clear that selling online needs to do more and yet Live Video Shopping, the retail equivalent for shopping-over-stream, has not gone mainstream. The main culprits are poor implementations & the victims are both the consumers and the now-empty retail stores.


A live video shopping store powered by Baaz


At Baaz, we are changing that. By bringing video streams over which one can not only see the products in 360 degrees but interact with the sellers and carry out purchases instantly — especially important when there are only a few pieces of a particular size. In addition, our curated set of experts & influencers do regular live streams of interesting products and are often able to procure them for their followers at discounted rates, albeit for limited quantities only. Going shopping in the new world now means going Live Video Shopping.


By the way, you know what’s better than listening to recorded music by your favorite bands? Watching them perform live.


Subscribe to this channel for more similar stories about how we are transforming the live video shopping experience in India for retail businesses and consumers, one store at a time.

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