Saumya of ShubhPuja Makes it Easier to Fulfil your Religious Quest
Age old traditions are meant to be preserved. They define our continuing culture and give us the identity that we are so proud of. But, in modern times, where life takes us to far off places, keeping in touch with your roots can be a daunting task.
Understanding the hassles involved in religious celebrations and ceremonies through personal experiences is what gave Saumya Vardhan the idea to start her online venture Shubhpuja.com.
A former M&A operations consultant, Saumya shares with us her journey through starting India’s first E-commerce store providing solutions in the form of puja packages so that your religious functions are complete with ease. Their tagline “Connecting to God in 1-click” is truly a testament to the rare kind of service they provide to their customers.
Let’s start with a few questions about Shubhpuja
1. Before we begin, tell us about your brand, what products do you sell?
My venture, Shubhpuja.com is the only religious e-commerce platform that specializes in offering customized puja packages (festival puja, wedding puja, antim sanskar puja, paatha, japs and kathas, grah pravesh, mundane etc.) and astrological services (Vedic Astrology, Numerology, Vaastu shastra, Gemstone therapy and palmistry) to individuals and corporates who do not have adequate contacts or time to organise pujas themselves.
We help our devotees to organise the religious ceremonies in a hassle-free manner by offering:
- Complete puja samagri kit (depending on the type of pujas)
- Fixed flat rates
- Free muhurat consultation
- Convenient location (Home, office, factory, temple etc.)
We have the biggest network of astrologers, numerologists, vaastu consultants in India along with tie-ups with all the biggest religious organisations, educational institutes, highly revered priests from Benaras, Ujjain, Haridwar and other parts of the country.
2. What’s the story behind you taking the plunge into e-commerce and starting your own online store?
Prior to setting up Shubhpuja.com, I was living and working in London where I realized that my friends and I had very limited opportunities and time to celebrate Indian festivals, organise any religious ceremonies in the traditional way making it difficult to practice Indian traditions and culture so it can be forwarded to the next generation.
Another personal incident deeply touched me and made me realize the need for Shubhpuja.com. One of my close friend’s father passed away in Delhi, most of the family members lived abroad and by the time they arrived all the arrangements had to be made. There was no one except the grieving mother to arrange and inform all the relatives. It was very difficult to find any pandit or ask anyone to organise the ceremonies while the family is recuperating. But now after the launch of Shubhpuja.com, all these ceremonies and arrangements can be made with just a click or a phone call.
I realised that there is a great need to set up a religious e-commerce platform that allows people from all walks of life to conduct pujas and rituals on various occasions during happiness and grief, at their convenience, to stay connected with God and thank him for whatever he has provided.
3. What all online marketing channels have you dabbled into since you started, say blog or social media, etc that have helped increase your sales? Which ones have shown you maximum returns?
4. Apart from your online store, what are some of your other points of sales? Say, exhibitions, retail outlets, etc. Which ones have worked best for you?
We provide face-to-face consultation services at our offices and at customer’s preferred location. Apart from that we have been participating in various college festivals, holiday carnivals and festivals for Diwali, New Year, Valentines day etc. We also hold workshops on Astrology, Vaastu shastra and numerology for big groups of people or corporates that are interested in these sciences.
5. How has the whole experience of setting up your own online store with Zepo been?
If I say that Shubhpuja.com helps organise customized religious ceremonies in a hassle free manner then Zepo is my counterpart that helps set-up e-commerce store in a hassle free manner within a few days. I found Zepo’s team to be very friendly and helpful and they treated my business as their business to find solutions to critical issues. Shubhpuja.com needed special customizations such as embedding customer detail capture forms and payment workflow and Zepo has made it possible!
6. Can you tell us about 2 features on the Zepo platform that you absolutely love and can’t do without? And 2 features that you think can do with some improvement?
Shubhpuja.com caters to both Indian and international clients. Zepo has made our life easy by providing instant currency conversion feature and by charging different shipping rates for international and indian customers.
Some improvements can be made by firstly giving the store owner the ability to customise customer notification template and secondly to be able to use the template on ad-hoc basis to send communication to customers.
Now some questions for you, as an entrepreneur!
1. What were you doing before you started with Shubhpuja?
Prior to setting up Shubhpuja.com, I worked as an M&A operations consultant with Ernst & Young, London.
2. Keeping the same levels of enthusiasm every day is not easy. What keeps you inspired and motivated every day?
Seeing the relieved and happy faces of our customers after they take our astrological and puja services. Finding solutions and remedies for our customers, relieving them of their worries and insecurities and giving them an inner satisfaction and new confidence, motivates me everyday!
3. What are some of the decisions that have worked best for you in your business?
Too soon to comment on this, time will tell.
4. If you could give one piece of advice to other Internet entrepreneurs who are trying to make money with their online store, what would it be?
All things are difficult before they are easy! So be patient, persistent and keep the ‘Can do’ attitude!
You can check out their wonderful services on www.shubhpuja.com and connect with them on email@example.com
Thank you Saumya Vardhan for your wonderful time and motivating answers. We wish you all the very best!
Do you have a great online business idea? Well it is time to put it to action. Give Zepo a try and start your online store in the next 5 mins.