Online Business in Nigeria: Why Platforms Like BizBinge Are Way to Go

Our world is living through a revolution: online business, also known as e-commerce, is taking the planet by storm, one continent at a time. Last year online sales across the world have hit close to 2 trillion US dollars — that’s nearly five times Nigeria’s GDP, Africa’s top economy, for 2016.

But is it worth comparing these figures? Not really. Most African countries, Nigeria included, have barely dabbled in e-commerce.

It is about to start happening though. Major ecommerce platforms whether classified-ads’ like OLX or marketplace-centered like Jumia are pioneering trends and gradually gaining ever larger numbers of followers as more and more people get online.

eCommerce is for sellers, not just for buyers

Nigerian customers are gradually getting used to the concept of buying goods and ordering services online: this is helped by the growing middle class. Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC), a multinational professional services firm, includes in this category households who earn between $8,500 and $42,000 per annum, and claims that their number grew by 600% between 2000 and 2014. By 2030 the number of middle-class households is expected to triple. What does it mean in terms ecommerce? More discretionary income, increased connectivity and as a result — more online purchases.

Greater number of Nigerians reaping benefits of ecommerce experience is great news for big companies already on the market. But not only for them. It is also excellent news for prospective ecommerce business owners — people who are thinking about getting online but cannot gather the courage.

If you are one of those undecideds, our word of advice: the time is now. The time to open an online store and start selling — whatever it is you are good at — goods or services. There are plenty of great platforms around to start off on, though we would recommend our own — BizBinge.

Why? Simply because it is the easiest place to set up a digital storefront and connect with customers. We have looked far and wide to ensure this statement was correct. It is also the most affordable.

“Gig” economy maybe a newish concept for North America or Europe — over the past few years people here have been coming to terms with working part-time, remotely or combining several occupations. In Nigeria most people are used to juggling jobs and running side businesses to supplement income. Ecommerce is a major constituent part of the “gig” economy and if you don’t want to be left behind — join it! Just make sure you pick up the best set of tools.

4 reasons to join the ecommerce revolution right now:

  1. It can only get better and bigger: connectivity and digital infrastructure are improving daily. As time goes on online trading will continue to take over more conventional ways of selling goods and services.
  2. Online fraud is one of the main problems for Nigerian ecommerce and a reason behind customers’ lack of enthusiasm for buying and selling online. This is why you have to choose carefully who you buy from and more importantly — where you set up shop. At BizBinge we have created a third-party payment system which allows time and space to resolve disputes should they arise.
  3. Business to call your own: just like when you buy or rent premises for a shop or a workspace, you want to make them as attractive and as representative of you as a person, when you set up an online storefront it has to reflect you and your business. At BizBinge we have come up with a perfect balance: a standardized look for businesses in a varied marketplace. You choose the information you display and how you display it, you pick the photos of your goods and services, you can chat with customers and our technical support as well.
  4. Help yourself — help your community. It is increasingly clear that ecommerce prospers where there is a sense of community and a sense of shared values. You can’t see the people you are dealing with so you should be able to understand them through the information available about them on an ecommerce platform — and same goes for them about you. At BizBinge we have been building not just an online business platform but a marketplace and a community of companies. Trust is essential for online success.

The digital revolution is well underway globally and it has reached Africa. It is up to you whether to join it or fall by the wayside.

One thing we are certain about — ecommerce waits for no one and getting in early and confidently with the best and the most flexible solutions is key to success. And BizBinge is just that: flexible, reliable and smart. So don’t hesitate and join us this summer!

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