Online shopping has become increasingly popular due to convenience and often lower prices. It can save the individual the hassle of searching several stores and then waiting in long queues to make payment.
Shopping can be done at any time and the goods are delivered to your doorstep.
Tumo Maokisa and his team proudly host the first online shopping store in Botswana called Shop-360.net.
“We started trading in March this year and the shop has proven to be a great success, Batswana are simply in love with the convenience,” said Maokisa.
Shop-360.net came into existence when Maokisa realised how hard it was to find some products.
“It’s a convenient one stop online shop where customers can go on their computers, phones, tablets excreta to do their shopping,” said Maokisa.
He said in the online shop one can buy modern gadgets and their accessories, clothing and sunglasses and many more.
“We are forever growing the shop to include more items that our customers can choose from,” Maokisa said.
He also has ever growing relationships that he has established with local distributors who he said are always eager to stock his warehouse. This he saw as an advantage because they are always ready for orders.
“We deliver to the customer’s doorstep be it at home or at the office, in Gaborone we take no longer than 36 minutes but in surrounding areas and the rest of the country we promise a same day delivery which we never fall short on,” he said.
“I see that people are very interested in this kind of shopping by their response and ours is just to keep growing our product range to keep the interest as high as possible,” said Maokisa.
He also believes the fact that there are no added costs even those of delivery to those living in Gaborone and that their products are at market price or less adds to the reason why the business is growing so fast.
He said a small fee is incurred by those living more than 15 kilometres from the city just to cover the cost of transportation.
“In the next 2 years we will have distribution centres all over Botswana so that we do away with the existing delivery charges to those who are affected,” he said.
Maokisa said even after the small delivery fee is added their prices still work out cheaper than if a customer had gone to the store to purchase over the counter.
He said his research has taught him that people are mostly worried about giving out their credit card details online because of the escalating crimes associated with this kind of shopping. “We have dealt away with anybody’s need to give out their card or any other banking details online by taking advantage of the mobile phone money services that are provided by the local mobile phone networks. These include the likes of Orange money, Ewallet services by First National Bank and so on. Other than that we offer the option of cash on delivery,” said Maokisa.
He said they carefully confirm customer details before they dispatch the delivery team to avoid any setbacks and so far have never experienced any hick ups with deliveries.
The future seems bright for Shop-360.net as plans are underway to develop a call centre service which will increase the amount of calls they can take at a time.
There will also be a swipe on delivery service to add on to customer convenience.
“We have already started talking to internet cafes to provide a service where they assist our customers to speed up the shopping process. Even though the caf├® rates will still apply it will cut the time spent on making the purchase,” said Maokisa.
He said the caf├® on the other hand will enjoy commissions for that assistance to their customers.
“At the end of August we will open a ticket hub at Rail Park Mall which will give our customers an opportunity to interact with us physically. We will also have samples of our online products for those who want the reassurance of seeing and touching before placing an order online,” said Maokisa.
He said the hub will be the first of many around the country and he is really excited about the concept.