Online business is more than just displaying products and attracting buyers. The even more challenging task is getting an efficient and cheaper means of delivering products to clients.
This has been far from being satisfactory in the Cameroon e-commerce ecosystem.
In one of my trial experiences, I ordered a product that cost just 500frs in an e-commerce store based in Yaounde.
They actually received my order with delivery address (Kribi, Cameroon), plus payment which I made already.
This means that they have to displace someone from their warehouse, to board a taxi ? to Mvan, then send the parcel (that cost 500frs) to reach me in Kribi.
This is practically what a common man calls “business-by-fool”. ?
In my earlier post, I talked about digital marketing strategy got businesses, and why you need one, in order to avoid such errors. You may want to check it here: 8 Incredible Reasons Why Your Business Needs a Digital Marketing Strategy
Two weeks today, I have not received the product, neither have I heard from them – strange.
In as much as I blame them, I actually understand that their enthusiasm for realizing they have a market base potential all over Cameroon outweighed the fundamental preoccupation of taking practical steps to ensure that delivery was equally possible nationwide.
You see, it is not how wide you extend at start-up, but building a good delivery system and credibility that will prepare you to eventually conquer the market nationwide and even internationally is even more advantageous.
When Jumia existed in Cameroon, they only served in Douala and Yaounde – as big as it was, imagine.
Do you know why?
That is where they had their warehouses – where they stock goods, and delivered just few minutes, metres or kilometers away from someone who placed an order.
I remember ordering a TV set from them three years ago, and they suggested it couldn’t be delivered to me in Kribi, but possibly to an acquaintance in Douala or Yaounde.
That was smart, giving our porous transport and delivery system in Cameroon.
Product delivery system should be the fundamental concern for anyone venturing into e-commerce business.
As Mr Remarkable, Javnyuy Joybert would say, for every successful business start-up, planning, market research, strategizing, etc, are among the key. Get free guide on how to plan your digital marketing. Read here: 8 Incredible Reasons Why Your Business Needs a Digital Marketing Strategy
The fact that your ad can reach every corner of the country doesn’t mean that you have to target them as customers if you do not have a clear path of delivering your product/service there.
How does an e-commerce store selling honey in Garoua deliver a 1litre honey purchase to someone in Kribi, if they do not have a product warehouse near or in that city?
- The road may be long, but how quick you get to your destination all depends on the expertise you seek from industry experts.
- Let me dish out some FREE propositions on how you can ameliorate the service, if you are an actor in it:
- 1. Get a warehouse near every possible delivery ? area.
- 2. Limit your market to towns where you are more likely to deliver efficiently.
- 3. Create partnership with shops that deliver similar products like you.
- 4. Do weekly delivery schedules, instead of daily.
- 5. Partner with travel agencies on a win-win agreement.
- 6. Make pick-up points, instead of home delivery.
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