How Technology Is Transforming Trade For Retailers
BY IREYIMIKA OYEGBAMI
It goes without saying that people’s lives and livelihood across the continent and Nigeria specifically will improve significantly if trade is easier; and the gap between seeing an opportunity and earning a living is reduced to the very barest minimum.
Studies have shown that trade enhances economic growth and welfare. It also plays a central role in ending global poverty when you consider that trade can act as a outlet for surplus production and widening the market.
The importance of making trade easy cannot be overemphasized because it basically reduces the cost and unpredictability of transactions and increases opportunities for SMEs and other players in the digital economy.
Conversely, the digital economy and being able to leverage technology present the biggest opportunity for young people to participate in the economy.
Supply chain inefficiencies in the retail sector continue to affect how traders do business. Logistics, storage and the ever-changing consumer demands are just some of the challenges retailers have to cope with.
Despite their obvious contribution to trade and economic development over the years, retailers have faced a number of challenges in their quest to trade effectively. Logistics, financing and finding a market to source their goods top the list of their concerns.
To stay afloat in business, they are constantly thinking of new ways to ensure that they meet consumer needs, remain competitive and prevent revenue loss. By managing supply chain processes, retailers are better able to cut excess costs and in turn offer value to consumers.
Technology is radically changing the retail landscape in Nigeria and beyond.
Sendy is leveraging the power of technology to enable manufacturers and brands to connect with retailers. Through Sendy Supply, retailers are now better equipped to power the way they source, order and stock their products. They also offer free last mile distribution and logistics services.
“Sendy Supply provides a platform that enables businesses to purchase stock at competitive prices from multiple suppliers. We also provide advanced credit and flexible financing to enable businesses to buy stock and meet customers’ shopping needs. Through the platform we are helping general retailers to grow and do more by picking and shipping stock from suppliers to their stores within 24 hours so that they can spend more time growing their businesses,” said Wale Adisa, Sendy General Manager, English West Africa in a past interview.
For the many merchants who operate retail and even wholesale stores, tech enablers like Sendy are now allowing them to enjoy more efficient logistics and distribution channels that are powered by technology so that they can scale faster and grow their businesses.
The platform supports a number of business segments such as product manufacturers, minimarts, wholesalers, retailers, liquor stores, hardware stores and much more. They are currently working with over 10,000 businesses.
The transformative effect that technology has on these businesses is highlighted by the fact that they become more productive, customer experience is enhanced, and the opportunities for innovation and growth is more available. Other value adds are seen in the ease in accessing other markets as well as improved choice offerings for consumers.
In order to remain competitive, retailers are now leveraging technology and automation in their operations.
They are embracing digitization so that they can operate with efficiency and succeed in their business. For businesses who want to scale, Sendy supply is available as a free app on google play and on IOS.
Even as technology continues to transform the trading landscape and help retailers to trade easier, it is important to mention that the business climate must also be conducive for all forms of economic activity.
Ms Ireyimika Oyegbami, a freelance writer and subject matter expert about trade facilitation and value creation is based in Lagos.