The cost of advertising a small business can leave the upcoming entrepreneur exhausted beyond the desire to carry on. It is the reason why so many of them hang around social media arching their voice boxes amidst the screams of heavily followed high mighty companies.
And though social media promises free marketing for all, attention given to the free mentions is thinly stretched denying small businesses devoid of marketing capital the opportunity to have their gospel heard far, deep and wide.
So, all the effort to post new information about their products brings home little or no profit at all. After all, no one seems to know them.
If yours is a small business, your advertising story is about to take a new and fruitful direction, thanks to Zayyad A. Said, the 36 year old Mombasa-born award winning entrepreneur. On several occasions, Zayyad admits turning to social media to ask his friends for recommendation on a product he desired to use simply because he could not locate such.
In the end, someone suggests a supplier who surprisingly is praiseworthy with myriads of positive oral reviews but almost no online presence. How is this even possible with every vendor seemingly bowing their energies towards social media?
Would setting up a centralized advertising system for small businesses in Kenya change the narrative?
In March 2020, Zayyad realized that he had enough time to create the perfect platform to help small businesses advertise their products in a more affordable way. The concept had been lingering in his mind for months but he had not given it much thought as to create a viable solution. So when the pandemic sent the entire nation working from behind closed doors, he began setting up the dream website; Clickmart.co.ke.
The website would provide free listing of businesses, freelance services as well as jobs that needed doing. So instead of putting up a request for a product you need on your WhatsApp status and hoping to get a few referrals, one click on Clickmart displays all the businesses that can solve your problem, their location and contacts. You are spoilt for choice; yay and hooray!
Regardless of the nature of the hustle; a boda boda rider, henna expert or even a homemade peanut butter guru, Clickmart is the place to list the service. Of course there is also space for the 5-star hotels, learning institutions, healthcare service providers and their relatives. As far as Clickmart is concerned, everyone deserves a space to preach their thing!
That explains Clickmart’s three advertising plans. You could list your business for free, pay Ksh.999 per year to appear on top on the list of your category, or pay Ksh.4999 for unlimited listing of all your products.
Is that not a fair deal bearing the state of Kenya’s economy?
And just when you think you have seen it all, the party just got started. Clickmart aims to facilitate safe trading by acting custodian during the transaction period between the buyer and seller. This is how it works.
If a vendor registers on Clickmart claiming to sell a certain product, they sign a contract with the website’s management to prove that they are a genuine supplier. So when a customer initiates the buying process on the website, they are requested to deposit the money with the website and the vendor is prompted to release the said product. Delivery of the product is initiated then the money is released to the vendor after the buyer confirms that the product is as desired.
The vendor is required to surrender 5% of product price to the platform for the effective facilitation of the process. This process applies to both tangible goods and services.
But on the sunny side, Zayyad is glad that his seemingly little COVID baby has survived its first year, thanks to his 12 years entrepreneurship experience and the tough lessons garnered from it.
He also loves the fact that most of the people he mentioned Clickmart to did not treat it as crazy pipedream. Instead, it has led to meetings with a wide variety of people, with a number of them asking to invest in it. Their offer could not have come at a better time.
As a young innovation itself, Clickmart could do with more advertising to double the current 100 new visitors per day count. And since such a platform requires other businesses to bring its concept to fruition, partnerships with others such as Sendy; a delivery services involving boda boda riders, among others come in handy. Such partnerships however demand seamless integration to make the click successful. And that cost lots of money.
So, is the hope for easier advertising for small businesses still a viable thought with Clickmart?
But before adding bells and whistles to the website, the basic functions must work. Thanks to Zayyad’s commitment to making this happen. The good news is, even though Clickmart does not have any paid clients yet, those who have visited the website and tested it understand the concept and love it. In fact, as at the time of writing this article, about 160 businesses had already been listed indicating that his services were not only needed but viable.
Zayyad is a diehard entrepreneur praised for the success of several other businesses with his name of them. He runs an accelerator program for upcoming entrepreneurs who are solving real societal needs; Hazina Accelerator. He also operates an award winning tech business; Intrasoft Technologies Limited and is a board member of Association of Microfinance Institutions in Kenya (AMFI-K).
In case you are still in doubts, Clickmart is a timely concept birthed in the hands of an able parent. Your easy advertising is just a click away!