The first online order I placed was sometime back in 2012. I had ordered a pen drive from Flipkart risking Rs 275. Well, the pen drive reached home in 4 days. Ever since, there has been no looking back, from groceries to big-ticket purchases like TVs, refrigerators, and smartphones, everything is happening online. However, I decided to use the Croma Store Pickup service to buy my Samsung Galaxy S0 FE 5G. For an avid online shopper like me, this was unimaginable. Eventually, I got my phone and I’m super happy.
Also Read: Why I bought Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G?
Further, there’s no information on the process of Croma Store Pickup online, and neither anyone has shared their experience. Hence I’m sharing my Croma store pickup experience hoping that it will help someone.
What is Croma Store Pickup Service?
Croma is a large chain of branded electronics and appliances store from the home of Tata. Its characteristic stores with teal branding are found in almost all the major towns and cities of India. They have a good collection of items right from smartphones, home appliances, kitchen appliances, and everything that your house may need.
Being such a large chain, let me tell you that I have never shopped from here as I shop mostly online. I do visit stores to have a demo of products but eventually, purchase online. It’s mostly because of the prices and hassle-free and transparent delivery.
Croma store pickup service was launched a few years ago and is available at most of their major stores. While this idea is quite common in the west, it’s a relatively newer concept here in India. Through the store pickup service, a customer can browse for products on Croma’s website, purchase them, and instead of the delivery, you can pick it up from a Croma store near you.
Benefits of Croma Store Pickup service
- You can pick up the item from any store at your convenience
- You can verify the product before you purchase
- You can get a demo of the product and clarify any doubts
- No hassle of delivery and tracking the package
- In case the product is faulty, you can return it on the spot
- You can be assured of a genuine product while picking it up from the store
Why did I choose Croma Store Pickup option
First and foremost, why did I choose to buy my Samsung Galaxy S20 FE from Croma and not from Amazon or Flipkart? Well, there are three reasons for it as follows:
- I had loyalty points on my credit card and some points which were awarded from my workplace. I could exchange these for gift vouchers for Flipkart or any other retail store.
- Flipkart doesn’t sell S20 FE 5G variant of the phones, it only has 4G variant with Exynos, and here’s why you should avoid Exynos-based phones in India.
- Amazon had the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G a (that too on offer last week) but I didn’t have the gift vouchers for Amazon.
Since I could get Croma gift cards in exchange for the points, I researched and decided to give it a shot. The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G is priced at Rs 75,000 (box price) but is sold that Rs 47,999. I effectively had to pay Rs 29,000 for the phone, which is almost the price I paid for my OnePlus 3T 4 years ago.
My Croma Store Pickup Experience
After doing my research on the various smartphone options that I have, I zeroed in on the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G as it was the most complete phone for the price I was paying. Since Amazon and Flipkart were eliminated, Croma was the only option left.
I browsed their website for the smartphone and the S20 FE 5G was available. I wanted the Cloud Mint color which was available only on delivery. But since this was my first time with Croma, I didn’t want to risk opting for their delivery. I was skeptical about what I’d receive. Hence, the Croma store pickup option came in handy.
I filtered the smartphone that I could pick up from the store here in Hyderabad and only the Cloud Navy version was available. I had to enter the pin code on the website for it to tell me whether the smartphone was available for the store to pick up or not. A few Croma stores had the smartphone – Jubile Hills, Sarath City Capital Mall, and another one in Kondapur.
But by the time I decided to make the payment and place the order, the phone was out of stock from all the places except Sarath City Mall. So I quickly went ahead the booked the same with the pickup date being the next day.
Their booking and payments page is nowhere close to the likes of Amazon and Flipkart. Applying gift vouchers was a pain. Moreover, you can apply only 5 vouchers on a single order and all of them must be of the same type – gift vouchers and gift cards are two different things apparently. Anyways, I went ahead and placed the order.
A few anxious moments follow…
As soon as I placed the order, I got an SMS and an email that your order is received. Their order page doesn’t provide any detail apart from the order number, product details, billing address, and price.
There’s absolutely no way for you to know what’s the exact status of your order. (If you order from Amazon, you’ll understand the pain of no updates) Eventually I slept off hoping that there would be some updates in the morning.
The next day I got up and checked my emails, there was no update! I checked the order page, there’s no change there as well! Now I slowly got worried as to what would happen next. I called up the customer care number and it wouldn’t connect the first few times – which made me even more worried. Eventually, I got through and the person told me that the store opens at 11, so please call back after that.
I called again around 11:15 and got through to customer care after multiple tries. This time I was told that the store had just opened, and you need to hold for 5-10mins. I was put on hold for the next 6-8 minutes. After that, I was told that someone from the store would call back in the next 15 mins. At this point I was like, did I do the right thing choosing for the store pickup? Would I get my phone today?
A pleasant store pickup experience
My phone rang in another 30mins with Mr. Chandrasekhar on the line, the store manager from Croma outlet at Sarath City Capital Mall. He was extremely cordial and had all my order details. He told me that the phone is in stock and I could visit the store and pick it up.
They needed an id proof which I asked if an email would work. They agreed and I told them that I’d share it with them right away. I got into a work call and couldn’t send the mail. I got another call from the sore asking if I had mailed it or not. (Never expected this follow up call) I mailed the details and told them that I will be at the store around 4 PM.
I reached Sarath City Mall around 5 and located the store. I told the person there that I’m there to pick up the phone and that I had spoken to the store manager. In another 5 mins, Mr. Chandrasekhar arrives with the paperwork and the phone. (At that moment, I was elated, this Croma Store Pickup actually works) I signed the required papers and was handed over the invoice. I checked my Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G smartphone there – everything in the box was present and the phone powered on just fine.
Exchanged some pleasantries and walked out. While I was eager to get home and unbox, set up my phone, it started raining cats and dogs. I had to say back at the mall and took a few of my work calls from the mall itself.
Should you opt for Croma Store pickup?
I narrated my complete story of the Croma Store Pickup here, while the concept is pretty good and helpful, the Croma website needs a lot of work. For an avid online shopper, the lack of details pertaining to the order status is a nightmare. You don’t know where your product is. While everything else on the website is good. Another thing that I observed is that there were zero reviews for the product before I purchased it. And currently, it has one 5 star review which is misleading in a way.
The offline Croma store pickup experience was a breeze. The backend team had updated the store and everything was super smooth at the Croma store. They had all the COVID related protocols followed and I was glad that the sales folks didn’t attack me as soon as I entered the store
So should you give Croma Store Pickup a try? Well, you can. If you aren’t someone who has shopped online much and can’t come to terms with home deliveries, go ahead and give Croma store pickup a try. You’ll be able to see the product in front of your eyes and return too if necessary.
I hope this blog post of my experience of Croma Store Pickup experience will help others who are planning to do the same. Hope you found this post helpful, please leave your comments below, Tweet to me @Atulmaharaj, DM me on Instagram or Get In Touch for any further information.