Here is how you can start an online store in Africa. It is easy to start an online shop in Africa ONLY IF you plan ahead and use the right resources. Internet shopping looks different from heading through a real building of bricks. This has to be paid for by your online store.
Your buyer, no matter what you offer, needs to believe that buying from you is safe and comfortable.
How to start an online store in Africa
Just some good advice before we continue, stay away from dropshipping websites that are ready-to-buy. It’s not working. That’s all we’re going to say on dropshipping because your own shop is the priority here.
What you need to start an online store in Africa in 2021
- Stock – You either need products/services to sell or if a customer orders it you should at least be able to get it without delay. Without something to offer, an online store can’t exist.
- Product images – All the difference would be made by the photos you use for your store. High-quality images perform best on white backgrounds. For all online shops, it is the norm. A pure white background allows a consumer without distractions to concentrate their attention on the product. High-quality photos generate trust in your product and your organization as well. Why would I spend money with you if it looks bad? Items photographed from different angles often assist clients to get an overall vision of the object.
- Product Information – Again since your shop is not a brick-built house, you have to make sure that all the details about the product that would persuade them to purchase it from you is given to your customers. Payment Gateway – In order to buy products/services from you, your shop must have a payment facility for clients. You may pick COD and EFT most commonly. We suggest PayFast, a local South African provider, for payments using Visa and Master cards. Build an account free of charge and apply to be a merchant. When they order your goods, PayFast offers a safe online payment facility for customers. PayFast is used by big names like Takealot.com. Money is deposited in your PayFast account and can be transferred on a weekly basis to your daily bank account.
- Shipping – Decide how the goods are going to be sent to clients. What service(s) are you going to use, how much will it cost the consumer and how soon will they be able to get their products? All of these are questions that you need to answer and prepare for. The website will be built around your shipping methods on the basis of your decisions.
- Online store website setup – For a website, you can hire me, WhatsApp me +260977770202. Preparing for a website is the next level. Your website will need some content, a contact form, refund policies, terms and conditions, etc., just like any normal website. To talk about your company and what it is that you offer, your website will need a home page, unless you want to advertise your website vigorously. Other than product listings, a website like Takealot.com does not require much content. To get their brand name out there they have spent millions on ads. You do not have this sort of marketing budget, so your website needs to do all the ads it can to draw clients through search engines such as Google and Bing.
- Marketing – Your brand new website needs clients. For that reason, you’re going to have to sell your website to friends of your family and everyone else you meet. This is free marketing and it should be completely used by you. Even with Facebook paid ads and Google ads, set a budget aside for online marketing. To attract clients, open your shop with a promotion or discount voucher. Remember, publicity doesn’t guarantee revenue for you but it means that you get out there with your brand name. The more frequently a brand is spotted, the more a shopper’s mind sticks to it and when they’re ready, they’ll look for the shop they can remember best. You are investing in your business, so keep marketing. A website (organic SEO) can automatically market itself, but this takes a very long time to build up (6 months and more). In order to launch your company, paid advertising is required.
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