Why Should You Visit? Insights to be gained for small business owners
Jaipur, Rajasthan – the name brings up an image of royalty, culture and tradition. If the first identity of Jaipur is forts and palaces, traditional handcrafted items follow suit. For the visitor, Jaipur markets come next on the itinerary after the forts and palaces (Amber fort, Hawa Mahal, City Palace).
The collection of traditional Rajasthani products characterises the best markets in Jaipur, be it mojari footwear, leather products, textiles, brass works, blue pottery, marble sculptures, miniature paintings or the typical Rajasthani jewellery and precious stones.
The ideal one-stop destination for everything in handicrafts is the Bapu Bazar in Jaipur. A walk down the market will take you to another world- the world of colour, precision, style and uniqueness. Every item on display at Bapu Bazar unfolds a story of tradition and heritage – a silent tale of designs of the skilled artisans who created them.
Bapu Bazar is among the very few organised markets in India where shops focus on traditional handcrafted items. Most of them (the shops) are similar in size and dimension, giving the whole market a unique appearance.
Conveniently located in the heart of the pink city, Bapu Bazar in Jaipur stretches from the Sanganeri Gate to the New Gate (also linking road extension). It is about 4 km from Jaipur Railway Station and is on Chaura Rasta in the city centre. To reach the Bapu Market Jaipur, you can avail of local buses, autos, taxis from any part of the city.
You will find the Bapu Market always crowded with tourists and locals for the items' variety and affordability. What will you buy at the Bapu Bazar? Let us explore some of the things from a long list of favourites, which have made this market famous.
Popular Products at Bapu Bazar
1. Mojari footwear
A local product of Jaipur, mojaris are available for both men and women; Mojari footwear is hand- made using the skin of the camel, though other materials are also used now. Also known as Jootis, the footwear is beautifully embroidered and comes in various attractive colours and patterns.
Some of the custom-made mojaris are embellished with beads and exquisite zardozi works. It complements Indian ethnic dresses. The distinctive design segregates mojari footwear from regular shoes. Mojaris, other than the specially decorated ones, are relatively inexpensive compared to the branded shoes and casuals.
2. Leather items
Rajasthan has a long history of leather works, and you cannot miss the display of the various items like handbags, belts, wallets, decorative pieces as you stroll down the Bapu Bazar in Jaipur.
3. Artificial jewellery
Earrings, neckpieces, and anklets; bangles have a special place as it is prevalent in two varieties, lacquer-made and of colourful silk threads.
Bapu Market Jaipur is full of shops selling handicrafts, from intricate wall hangings with detailed mirror work to decorative pieces to suit every home. The age-old metal craft of Jaipur set a high standard in craftsmanship, and you will be amazed by the lifelike reproduction of some of the items.
5. Puppets (Katputli)
Rajasthan has a long tradition of puppet shows which tells you about the courageous kings and amazing queens; these beautifully made dolls serve as a typical souvenir. Bapu Bazar offers you plenty of choices to shop for puppets. These charming dolls with wooden heads and colourful dresses are synonymous with Rajasthan's culture.
Locally called Jaipuri razai, these quilts are made out of a particular grade of fine cotton fabric(also in silk and velvet for the expensive ones), which is light in weight and provides enough warmth on chilly nights. The handcrafted Jaipuri razai comes with covers that display their typical block- printed designs.
Jaipur is the hub of the famous bandhej (or tie and dye) clothing which offers typical designs and prints. You will also find pieces that have delicate embroideries and mirror work on them. The Leheriya saree and Bandhni dupatta have become signature items of Jaipur bandhej art today. Clothing with Sanganer and Bagru prints are the other popular choices.
8. Blue pottery
The Jaipur blue pottery items are among the best for home decoration. Along with pottery, marble sculptures, too, is a speciality of Rajasthan. Jaipur has a large number of skilled artisans creating stone artefacts and religious idols.
Upcountry traders come to this Jaipur Wholesale Market to source traditional bandhej, Sanganer and bagru clothing. The range of items, many sellers, and a convenient location make Bapu Bazar the top Jaipur Cloth Market.
With a large influx of tourist's daily, shops stock numerous showpieces and artefacts that can serve as souvenirs. All items bear the unmistakable stamp of Rajasthani craftsmanship. Some of the small accessories come exquisitely decorated with traditional mirror work.
Insights for Small Business Owners
A market is a business place, and there are always lessons to be learned by a willing visitor. A unique feature of Bapu Bazar in Jaipur is a type of parity and even friendliness in competition among the shop owners. Most of the shops have similar decor and style, and there is no overt move to attract customers by an additional decoration of the shops.
A multitude of visitors could be a reason, with all shop owners happy with their sales. The items are almost the same at most shops, but a fine differentiation in design exists.
Affordability, availability and variety of items at the Bapu Market in Jaipur capture the visitors' imagination; this leads to a positive word of mouth, reinforcing the market's perception as a top destination for traditional Rajasthani items.
Takeaways from Experiences at Bapu Bazar
- Use source for product differentiation: Build up your team of artisans/workers for the shop items. Try to generate enough orders to fill up their (artisans) capacity to block sales to other traders. All these handcrafted items that look similar will have nuanced differences in design and pattern, giving exclusivity.
- Efficient storage: A small shop will have a limitation of space- a large number of items will complicate the situation further. An innovative and efficient system of storage and retrieval of stocks is the key to success.
- Customer handling: A busy tourist place does not offer much scope in building long term customer relations. The focus here should be on effective handling of customers, how quickly you can close sales, and cater to the next one. Applicable for all retail level shops with limited space.
A Few Tips for the Visitor
- Bapu Bazar is open on all days from 10 AM to 10 PM, though some shops may close early depending on customer traffic.
- Bargaining is a welcome `exercise'- the shop owners love it. Avid shoppers mention a bargaining margin of 30 to 50 % on the quoted price!
- Include street food in your visit plan to Bapu market; do not miss kulfi and falooda, especially in the summer months.
- Hawa Mahal, a significant tourist attraction of Jaipur, is close to Bapu Bazar - you may combine both in one trip.
Bapu Bazar in Jaipur offers a significant lesson: use your available resources efficiently to maximise business. You can learn how to handle various items, each with a large inventory, in a small space and make customers happy.
Q. Will Bapu Bazar in Jaipur give me a complete shopping experience?
Ans. Every market in every city has some speciality. Bapu Bazar will give you complete exposure to locally made items. Rajasthani handcrafted products are sold in other places too, but Bapu Bazar offers you a one-stop experience.
Q. In my retail shop, I sell a large number of items. Keeping track of inventory is complicated and sometimes leads to a loss in sales. How to prevent it?
Ans. You may use digital sales & inventory packages to keep track. Several options are available in the market. OkCredit is a reliable company with many successful business improvement products.
Q. Of all the items mentioned, what is the signature item of the Bapu Market in Jaipur?
Ans. Mojari footwear is the speciality of Bapu Bazar.