Over the past few years, we’ve witnessed the revolution that the internet has brought on the retail industry. Before the turn of the decade, online retail used to be limited to books, but now it has expanded to cover almost everything one may need, be it a pair of shoes, clothes, mobile phones, laptops, and so on. Now, this phenomenon is slowly reaching the two-wheeler market as well. Hero Motocorp has tied up with Snapdeal.com, one of India’s leading e-commerce websites, to sell their bikes and scooters online.
The process isn't as straightforward as buying other items online. First, you "purchase" your desired Hero two-wheeler by paying the ex-showroom price on snapdeal.com, post which a voucher gets generated. Within the following 48 hours, you'll be given the details of the dealer who's closest to the given address. You'll have to visit the dealer in person, provide them with the snapdeal.com voucher and documents necessary for vehicle registration, and pay them the difference from the on-road price, which will include registration fees, life tax and the insurance premium. You'll be able to take delivery of your brand-new Hero two-wheeler within the next 1 - 5 working days, depending on availability.
Where this system scores is the number of payment options it offers. You can either pay by credit card, debit card, or net banking, whichever is most convenient. Furthermore, if you are paying by credit card, you can even avail a zero down payment EMI option with your issuing bank, making it all the more easier to pay, minus the hassles usually faced when applying for two-wheeler loans.
Hero will first have the Maestro on offer via this scheme, and will introduce its other models such as Splendor, Passion, and Karizma soon. The company isn’t the first to implement online sales of its two-wheelers though; that honour lies with Mahindra 2-wheelers, which introduced this method earlier this year. Snapdeal also offers an option to book the latest-generation Mahindra Scorpio online as well. Will this catch on? Well, it certainly is a novel solution, but there is very little chance that it’ll replace live showrooms, as two-wheelers aren’t really commodities that you can buy without prior physical interactions.