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E-commerce is an emerging segment in the Kenyan market. As more people use the Internet in their daily lives, merchants have seen the need to put their wares online. This has led to companies setting up their own e-commerce websites to place and process orders. Individual merchants have also turned to platforms like WhatsApp or Facebook to sell their wares.

There are a lot of individual merchants out there who sell their goods and services online. However, they lack in a number of features that could be useful to them.

Enter Goby, the ecommerce platform that is geared to make sure that small merchants have an all in one platform that makes conducting their business easier. This is an app by WPP Scangroup that seeks to fill a void that has been neglected for a while: small merchants that want an easy way to manage their businesses.

Goby was born when a cake seller asked pertinent questions that were based on boosting the business. The questions were about who to contact to make a nice website for the brand, tracking revenue from the business and displaying the products in one catalogue.

Goby says their application is “technology for the small fish of the world” since the name Goby refers to the world’s smallest fish. Their aim is to empower the “small fish” to give them a chance to thrive and give them access to “big fish technology.”

What does Goby offer?

gobi app
Goby app preview

So what does Goby offer to the small fish merchants? Well, first they have a prebuilt and easy to use website template for easy cataloging. This solves that pain point of having a website and not having a catalogue in one sweep.

Goby has a dashboard that shows you aggregated and detailed sales data. It includes a calendar to track sales per day. This helps an individual gain insight on best performing products, their sales figures and more. Those insights could prove to be useful since a merchant can know which products are popular and what are not popular, which is great.

There is a dedicated “My Orders” page which allows you to manage your orders. This solves a problem where your sales records are recorded in various of ways like notepads, texts and more which is messy.

You are also able to broaden your reach beyond such platforms. like WhatsApp (if that was your main platform) where you can also share via SMS, Facebook, Instagram and more. Broadening your reach means broadening your client base.

There is also a dedicated “My Customers” page that gives you a single directory for all of your customer details. This is great since this solves the issue of having customer details in different places and aggregating them in one section makes it easier to contact them. You also get a broadcast list which allows you to send custom messages to a group of customers.

Ecommerce sites usually charge a commission per sale to competitors. Goby does this differently where you only need to pay a monthly subscription to use the service.

Black Friday Promotion

We are in November and this means that this is the month that we see Black Friday deals. Black Friday is usually an American shopping discounts extravaganza held after Thanksgiving and it has been replicated around the world. Black Friday deals usually attract a lot of eyeballs as people shop around ecommerce sites looking for deals.

In Kenya, we see players like Jumia that participate in Black Friday where over 15,000 vendors in Jumia will benefit from the increased traffic. Each month, approximately $40 million  to $50 million worth of transactions happen on ecommerce platforms in Kenya. Black Friday is a particular anomaly since transactions go way up where the weekly purchases of $10 million goes to $25 million and that is a massive opportunity for sellers.

Goby has identified that there are more than 3 million sellers in Kenya who do not benefit from Black Friday. This is due to the fact that these sellers do not have website or consumer reach to promote themselves. Only 15,000 to 17,000 vendors are selling during this time in Kenya which leaves over 2.98 million potential small businesses during Black Friday and they see the opportunity.

This is why Goby has a promotion where they are encouraging merchants to sign up by today so that they are not left out this Black Friday.

All a merchant has to do is to download Goby from the Google Play Store (it is not available on iOS for now), launch their free online show and get promoted this Black Friday. Goby will give you a free 30 day trial after which you’ll pay Kshs 300 per month to use the platform.

Goby plans to inform customers of the best and most unique deals of the year by Goby merchants where they will promote these shops with discounts through their paid media for free. This will be done starting tomorrow until 29th November (Black Friday).

This sounds like a pretty good platform for the millions of people out there with small businesses that need an easy platform to display their wares and also get an opportunity to cash in on the impending Black Friday bonanza that is slated to start in a week.

Download Goby here

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