Small and medium sized companies have been urged to incorporate online marketing in their sales and marketing strategies to further enhance business growth.
Speaking at the 3rd edition of the Vodafone Powertalks held at the Kampala Serena Hotel, Allan Richardson, the Chief Executive Officer of Vodafone Uganda said there is a growing need for Ugandans to adopt online marketing and business to better compete at a global level.
“Businesses, particularly SMEs, typically do not have clear strategies on how to convert their online audiences into real customers and generate revenue. I would like to urge Ugandan businesses, particularly SMEs, to begin thinking about establishing online point of sales to enable their customers buy their products and services in real time,” Richardson said. “Whatever the challenges and drawbacks, today’s forward looking businesses need to adapt and establish themselves in the online market if they are to survive”.
One of the panelists Victor Ndlovu, Country Manager, Visa Sub-Saharan Africa said adopting online payment systems will go a long way in fighting corruption across various industries.
“Online payment systems provide fraud prevention solutions because they are transparent. It’s easy for someone to monitor their online transactions than cash transactions because you get SMS and e-mail alerts based on a predefined criteria,” Ndlovu said, adding that there is a growing need to introduce the youth to e-commerce transactions by introducing application based services to meet their need thus growing the adoption rate of these e-commerce platforms.
Evelyn Nakitende- Administration Manager, Game Uganda highlighted the power of online marketing at Game stores to enhance their business performance.
“We’ve adopted Visa and other ICT based payment services and the benefits are already evident. A third of the non-physical cash payments at our stores are done via Visa. This provides convenience to our customers and to the store managers as well,” she said.
Dickson Mushabe, Founder and Managing Director, Hostalite Uganda said there are approximately 8.5 million internet users in Uganda with a growth rate of 17% which provides a wide market base and marketing platform for businesses in the country.
However, there is need for consistent online monitoring for one to be able to detect system mishaps and gauge consumer feedback to the products and services being sold.
David Gonahasa- founder and Managing Director of Roundbob.com says, “Monitor the statistics of your online business and push the product that is selling.”