Chinese entrepreneurs in Uganda have asked local business people to exploit the available opportunities that exist in online marketing and selling.
“Uganda and East Africa has an open investment opportunity for local business men to take the lead and establish a regional online one stop-shop where East African manufactured products can be marketed and sold.” Max Tang, an online business trainer and developer told the East African Business Week.
He said a number of African manufacturers want to sell their products across the continent through an established online shop.
However he said a reliable and trusted platform does not exist in the region and they sell on eBay or Amazon. “Uganda and Africa must not wait for global players to take this initiative. This is a very good investment opportunity for local entrepreneurs to turn around the trend of doing business.” Tang said.
Tang said businessmen from other parts of the world want to buy Ugandan products, but the challenge has been lack of information on where to find and buy such products. He said an online one-stop shop would solve this problem.
Tang said Chinese and Indian products have found an easy market in East Africa and other regions within Africa because producers, manufacturers and retailers in those countries sell on reliable trusted online shops.
“Today Ugandan business men and women do not need to physically travel to China or Dubai to make orders or payment for merchandise. They make orders online and their products delivered as per the agreed timeframe and this what we should learn to do.”
He said East Africans must adapt to new emerging global business trends to compete favorably in local, regional and international markets. “Online marketing and shopping is the way to go, consumers are looking for products and product information in their computers or phones before taking a decision on where to buy. This is the prime time to attract them to your store or product.” Tang said.
He said tourism and hotels can increase sales through online marketing and selling. “Am happy international tourist can easily find some information about Uganda tourism and hotels online by visiting various websites.
This should be packaged in a single online shop where all hotels or tour and travel companies can sell or market their products. This because consumers are always looking for variety to choose from,” he said.
The sales executive and administrator Dondolo Online Shop Kampala, who did not want be named in this article said, online marketing, selling and shopping is not new to Uganda, though not very popular.
“When we started this company about nine years back, we used to walk to car bonds, estate companies requesting to take pictures of vehicles and houses on sale and upload to the website, because the idea was new and no one knew about it. Many companies turned us down even though we offered to do it for free. Today the trend has changed business owners and manufacturers call us to have their products on our website and many customers buying, I believed East Africa will soon have one-stop online shop to match eBay or Amazon,” he said.