Trade as we knew has rapidly transformed within the past two months with the unforeseen curfew and lockdown states due to COVID-19. Unexpected changes have had to be made in the methods of selling and buying. Large supermarket chains have faced hurdles in transforming their trade platforms. Small and medium sellers have had to seek other options to maintain their businesses. Buying and selling has fast moved towards the online shopping platform, in an economy where online retail remained at a mere 1% prior to the pandemic. Yet, for SMEs, the lack of capital to set up their own online platforms, and maintain storing and distribution channels, as well as knowledge in selling online has created an environment of uncertainty.
The key to turn this threat into an opportunity lies in online marketplaces such as Daraz. Announcing a 0% sales commission charge in May and June for all existing and new sellers who partner with them, Daraz has initiated a stimulus programme for sellers, to support and encourage them in their transformation towards e-commerce and take advantage to sell online in Sri Lanka. Being the largest online marketplace to operate in Sri Lanka, the company comes forward to offer incentives worth 30 million rupees to small and medium businesses. The facilities also include free access to Daraz University, an online training portal that will help sellers gather insight on setting up shop and growing their business through Daraz. As cash flow for trade is also affected, Daraz has created an express payment system to ensure that sellers receive their payments within a period of 2 – 3 days. Furthermore, sellers will not be imposed with packaging costs through the stimulus programme. An additional benefit Daraz sellers receive is the marketing and promotional support carried out by the platform, helping to increase traffic to every store.
For SMEs this gives access to the future of trade, regardless of the size of their business. A marketplace is created for them that also ensures warehousing and delivery facilities, together with access to updated technology and marketing tools. It is also an opportunity to expand their markets, as Daraz delivers island wide with a capacity of servicing 10,000 households daily.
Through the Daraz App, which is considered to be one of the best online shopping apps in Sri Lanka – customers can easily interact and engage with the products on the platform. The Daraz App utilizes smart AI (artificial intelligence) to help users see what they are mostly interested in buying, creating an advantageous edge for every Sri Lankan who joins Daraz as a Seller.
The Daraz Sri Lanka Official Blog carries more information on all of the above.
Joining the Daraz Seller programme is as accessible and uncomplicated as selling on it. All SMEs partnering with Daraz will automatically receive the stimulus benefits by clicking here. https://bit.ly/3bQz0Nl