Bring your biz on­line

Sun Star Bacolod - - Business -

DON’T be afraid to ven­ture on­line.

This was the ad­vice of Muham­mad Hus­sain Khalid, vice pres­i­dent and head of Mar­ket­place of Lazada Philip­pines to brick and mor­tar en­trepreneur­s who are still hes­i­tant to ex­pand their busi­ness in the on­line space.

“Go­ing on­line is not dif­fi­cult,” said Khalid dur­ing the En­trepreneur­s’ Sum­mit held on June 14, 2019. “Any­one can do it.”

Khalid said bring­ing the prod­ucts on­line is the eas­i­est and cheap­est mode of growing the busi­ness. On­line shop­ping is also a ris­ing trend es­pe­cially among young shop­pers.

Khalid ex­plained that if a busi­ness is lim­ited to a phys­i­cal shop it can only at­tract clients within a fivek­ilo­me­ter ra­dius of the store’s lo­ca­tion. If it wants to grow big or be present na­tion­wide it needs to open thou­sands of stores.

“But if you tap the on­line space, it will give you un­lim­ited op­por­tu­ni­ties both in terms of reach and sales per­fro­mance,” said Khalid.

Cit­ing Lazada Philip­pines as an ex­am­ple, Khalid said the plat­form pro­vides as­pir­ing en­trepreneur­s the chance to jump­start their dream to be in busi­ness. The plat­form pro­vides no space con­straint as they can up­load over 20,000 prod­ucts in the on­line mar­ket­place.

More­over, sell­ing prod­ucts in Lazada also doesn’t re­quire any reg­is­tra­tion fee. Sell­ers only need to up­load valid iden­ti­fi­ca­tion cards so they could start up­load­ing their prod­ucts and sell­ing them.

Khalid said Lazada has been sup­port­ing the government, through the De­part­ment of Trade and In­dus­try, in un­leash­ing the en­tre­pre­neur­ial skills of Filipinos. Roughly 80 per­cent of the sales at Lazada Philip­pines are trans­ac­tions of lo­cal sell­ers sell­ing ei­ther lo­cal or im­ported goods.

Khalid said the e-com­merce site re­mains con­fi­dent of growing its busi­ness in the Philip­pine mar­ket fol­low­ing the ex­pand­ing mid­dle-in­come mar­ket,

growing tech-savvy in­di­vid­u­als and fast-growing econ­omy.

An­a­lyt­ics lead of Ama­zon Web Ser­vices Fred Her­man Groen IV, on the other hand, said en­trepreneur­s must start look­ing at the on­line space as a com­ple­men­tary venue to grow their busi­ness.

But be­sides go­ing on­line, he chal­lenged busi­ness own­ers to step up the level of cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence they pro­vide to their clients. He noted that among the chal­lenges faced by re­tail­ers now is sus­tain­ing the ex­cel­lent buy­ing ex­pe­ri­ence across all channels.

Groen said while there is a ris­ing num­ber of on­line shop­pers, cus­tomers ex­pect a seam­less ex­pe­ri­ence both in offline and on­line channels. He said that if they are reg­u­lar on­line clients, they ex­pect to be treated the same way when they visit phys­i­cal stores.

“Con­sumer ex­pe­ri­ence is the big­gest con­trib­u­tor to brand loy­alty, with neg­a­tive ex­pe­ri­ences sig­nif­i­cantly af­fect­ing busi­ness out­comes,” said Groen./ Suns­tar Philip­pines

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