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  Are you a business owner? Does your business have structure and systems for a defined process? Is your business digitally enabled? According to Amb. (Dr) Oyedokun Ayodeji Oyewole FIIM, ERMS, RMEM, FIRMS,
‘The only available means for most businesses to continue uninterrupted operations is home-based enabled workforce.’

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Whatever kind of business you do, whether in hospitality & entertainment, real estate & infrastructure, agro-allied, healthcare, IT & Media, education, restaurant & food, tourism, trading, customer service, management consulting, media, finance & banking, telecommunications, insurance, automobile, etc. However, if you want to start an online business, basically, you’re required to have a very strong presence in any of the digital platforms, which includes a landing page, or a website, Facebook, Instagram, Google, etc. Moreover, Ify Umunnakwe-Okeke, on Post Covid-19: Implications for Work in Developed and Emerging Economies, published in shared that:
‘The COVID -19 crisis has inevitably fast-tracked the advent of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). As organisations reassess business continuity plans and improve their risk management systems to mitigate the fall-out from future crises, the acceleration of the implementation of advanced technology in business will become a priority. This acceleration will have a ripple effect across all aspects of business and work.’ ‘The restrictions in movement and in some countries, total lockdowns, have caused the closure of many brick-and-mortar businesses. Consequently, consumers, faced with movement restrictions, have migrated to e-commerce platforms to meet their daily demands, a reaction that has driven up the market value of e-commerce businesses. Organisations like Amazon, Alibaba, eBay, Jumias and Konga have seen a considerable spike in customer traffic and have bolstered their workforce by employing temporary staff to meet the increase in demand.’
She stated that:
‘It is anticipated that the recent migration of customers to e-commerce will continue post-COVID -19. This is fantastic news for e-commerce and technology-driven organisations and signals a change in strategy for many brick-and-mortar businesses.’
Essentially, every individual as a business owner, or an intending business owner, can succeed online, start a new product/services, grow the existing one, or share their passion with others. With half a billion Africans having access to the internet and a large number also very active on Social media platforms daily, the game has now moved ONLINE. However, tens of millions of businesses small and large, still haven’t tapped into this power. Whether you’re a traditional retailer, a service business, a wholesaler or even an Internet start-up, there are many ways you can use e-commerce to reach more customers and increase sales. E-commerce is just a fancy name for selling things online. People have been making online purchases on websites and mobile applications for a while now.
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And all kinds of businesses are finding ways to make use of e-commerce to achieve their sales goals online. Maybe you want a website that allows people to view and search your inventory, create customer accounts, and set up recurring orders. Or you might start with a simple goal, like ‘I want to offer customers the ability to send payments through the web.’ The sky’s the limit. A report by eMarketer, an online e-commerce research company showed that e-commerce is growing at a rate of 16.8 per cent yearly globally while in Africa, the e-commerce space is put at 25.8 per cent – making it the fastest growing sector in the world. Operators in the sector have since come in to invest. Nigeria’s e-commerce market has been bogged down by a lack of customer trust, Internet connections hiccups and other issues. Despite the challenges, Nigeria’s status as an emerging market, its burgeoning youth population and its attraction to foreign investors, have seen investments in the e-commerce market space. But it’s so sad that of over 17 million small and medium businesses in Nigeria, only less than 10% are online. A country that’s topping Africa in the top 10 internet countries according to internet world stats. Nigeria has over 98.39 million internet users, 98% are mobile. If Umunnakwe-Okeke stated that ‘As businesses and employees seek technology software to maintain continuity, Verizon just bought Blue Jeans to go after Zoom.’ Who is not doing video now? The encouragement is to tap into the world of e-commerce and learn how to effectively sell your products online, you can start a digital business now, you can learn the strategy that will make sense for you to get back to business again. More so, technology offers opportunities for business owners to compete with large established companies. Business owners can compete with large companies, thanks to technology. With the low cost of equipment and software, business owners can increase their speed of growth and increase the share of voice (SoV), coupled with sustained daily communication on their social media platforms, along with taking advantage of the affordable promotion and advertising options their online materials (content) can be viewed around the world. Business owners have the ability to build brand and contacts online, thereby accessing new markets in other regions/countries. They can also leverage the power of collaborations to make a quantum leap in business, for instance, a fashion entrepreneur can collaborate with a beauty parlour to display her mannequin on the business premises of the beautician. While she increases her energy on the online business, she leverages collaboration to have a strong presence offline. Featured Image Source: Global Business School
Reuben Kalu is a #DigitalCoach, a much sought-after Online and Google #DigitalAfrica trainer & Google Certified Digital Marketer & Certified Facebook BYB Trainer. A Senior Consultant @STRUMDIGI, a writer & blog publisher. He has trained for & in several organizations such Daystar Career Plus, T-EDC, Sterling Bank, Babcock University. @kalu.reuben; +2348130589360
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This article was first published on 24th March 2021

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