I recently purchased this Dokra artifact from the website http://www.craftsvilla.com/discover-by-craft/dokra-art-craft/couple-on-bed-dokra-anwesha-tribal-arts-crafts.html and I must admit they did a fantastic job.
The product was reasonably priced, promptly delivered and matched the description and quality that I had anticipated. However what made the real difference is the presentation.
1. It was a beautiful carton and the packaging was not only aesthetically pleasing but also functional.
2. It came with a handwritten note (from one of the co-founder) along with a lovely envelope thanking me for the purchase and wishing me the best.
3. It came with a small handcrafted scented wax-terracotta lamp.
I have always emphasized that when Indians shop online, they seek value for money. Discounts and coupons are an easy way to satisfy this need of the customers, but it is not a sustainable one. What makes you really stand out is the way the e-commerce store handles the order. This handwritten note and diya would not cost much, but they definitely add this personal touch which any online biz lacks.
One should remember that Indian middle class is quite mobile and online stores are a great way to ensure that the family traditions on those special occasions are maintained. (and yes if you add birthdays and festivals, we have something or the other every second week). I wish I could gift my parents/in-laws a product that i bought in a clearance sale at a throw-away price. However I would be much more comfortable gifting them something that was nicely packaged, parceled and delivered without any hassle.
BTW Indian handicrafts make a perfect gift for all occasion (esp. if you want to gift it someone from a different culture) and my friend Shivam has agreed to post a video of dokra casting being sculptured live along with a note of various indian tribal cultures and their unique handicrafts. I would also insist that him to order something from the website and learn from the experience.