Merchants listed on Nearby Stores can now indicate their business hours, what measures are being taken to maintain social distancing inside the store and which essential goods are in stock
Nearby Stores, a dedicated section in Google Pay, which allows customers to find grocery stores in the neighbourhood is now available in 35 Indian cities, the company announced today. Nearby Stores was added to the platform in April but was available in a few major cities.
Merchants listed on Nearby Stores can now indicate their business hours, what measures are being taken to maintain social distancing inside the store and which essential goods are in stock. For cities like Mumbai where the lockdown is still applicable in many areas additional information like whether the store is located in containment zone or not will be displayed.
Google also announced that Pay users across India can now book their cooking gas cylinders from HP Gas, Bharat Petroleum or Indane and pay for it through the app.
The 35 cities where Nearby Stores is now applicable include Delhi NCR, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Varanasi, Lucknow, Vishakapatnam, Kolkatta, Patna, Indore and Bhuwaneshwar.
As lockdown started traffic on online platforms listing grocery stores grew. To cash on to this traffic, several payment platforms turned into grocery aggregators, showing nearby stores to their customers. PhonePe launched a similar feature called Stores in mid April with 10 million merchant partners across India. Another platform PayNearby has recently expanded its hyperlocal discover feature BuyNearby to over 2 lakh grocery stores across India. The company has also tied up with IndusInd Bank to enable contactless payments at the stores.
Google Pay also has a dedicated window for Coronavirus which provides latest, official safety guidelines from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, and also lists names and links of charities that are taking donations to support relief work.