Buying a smartphone or any other mobile device is not as challenging as it used to be a couple of years ago. This development can be attributed to a lot of reasons, including the fact that customers are more informed about what they want in a smartphone, and that there are many shops they can walk into to buy them. Or visit any of the tens of e-commerce sites at their disposal.
However, it is never black and white as I have put it because there are other challenges that people currently face, especially when they want to replace their pocket computer or purchase a new one. For example, we are Kenyans, and naturally, are bargain hunters who comb the internet for the best deal we can get. However, not many of us are lucky, and in some instances, buyers have reported being conned by shady online retailers who promise to sell them devices at a steal.
These issues have, to varying levels of success, been addressed. As said, are a ton of e-commerce sites that have purposely based their business on distributing smart devices and have done quite well because they listen to customers, deliver their wares as promised, and crown their sales with admirable after-sale services.
The three points are what Gadgets Leo, an e-commerce platform based in Nairobi, is trying to address. The site has a physical shop in the city (Kimathi House, First Floor Shop No. 106) that is purposely there to serve walk-in clients and make sure they walk away happy people. This arrangement is not unique because we have seen other similar businesses do the same thing, but it is always a plus to serve customers who are within the city and can pick a device for themselves.
According to Mark Aswa, who runs the shop and site, a lot of phone buyers have trust issues, especially in e-commerce platforms they have never heard of, regardless of their position in the market. To him, he sought to fill the gap based on winning the trust of customers in the sense that they can walk into the shop and buy a phone, or visit the Gadgets Leo site and perform the same operation with full confidence that their purchases will be authenticated and deliveries are done in a timely manner.
One of the critical features of the site is that loading a product into a cart is fast because the short exercise requires a buyer’s name and contact, unlike other sites that ask for more details. On the website, interested buyers can also see a WhatsApp icon that can be clicked to initiate a direct correspondence with Gadgets Leo.
Mark says that the latest phones and the majority of smartphones from manufacturers that sell their phones officially in Kenya are on his store shelves. This is actually good considering we have had cases where buyers fail to get a device of their choice at a shop, probably due to scarcity or general unavailability.
Speaking of manufacturers and their wares, the likes of Huawei, Transsion (TECNO, itel, and Infinix), OPPO and Samsung area available at Gadgets Leo. The same devices have a local warranty, so you should not worry about issues that may come up after purchase because the said OEMs have local repair shops that address warranty cases.
In the case of devices that are not sold here, Gadgets Leo will tell you upfront that you will be on your own once the one-year limited shop warranty elapses. Often, buyers are never informed of this fact, but as most of you may have figured, those devices, including the likes of HTC and LG that are not sold here officially have no local support.
In addition, the one-year shop warranty is limited to software issues that are often easily dealt with. The same has been promised for hardware issues that are of no user’s fault. Anything beyond that will be catered by the customer, including replacement parts purchases. On the bright side of things, Gadgets Leo has a running repair shop for all repair purposes.
Also, remember the likes of Samsung and its two-year warranty? Well, if you get a model that is not meant for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), it will be covered for one year. And as previously said, you will be told about the details should you choose to purchase a non-East Africa model.
You notice that I have dedicated a couple of lines speaking about warranty cases because let’s face it, smartphones are expensive investments, and customers need to know what they are getting into before committing their money.
Another interesting point is delivery. Often, you would want your device to reach your neck of the woods as early as possible. Those within the CBD can receive their purchases in under two hours at no extra fees. Deliveries outside the CBD will attract a KES 200 fee.
Deliveries to other towns, be it Kisumu or Mombasa, attract a flat rate of KES 500. In the future, the price will be adjusted based on distance.
Also worth noting is that Gadgets Leo does not make any cut from delivery fees because all that money goes to the courier service.
Gadgets Leo says that it revises and keeps the pricing of its phones up to date on a daily basis so from time to time, you will see price adjustments based on impending market conditions. This is a plus to a lot of people because we have seen sites that never update their sticker prices, with the main culprits being telco-managed stores.
For the most part, we can vouch for Gadgets Leo because we have experienced the reliability of their services. You also get amazing prices, unlike official retail stores that price their products slightly higher. Adding timely deliveries (within 24 hours outside Nairobi) and that Gadgets Leo is an official retail partner with the named brands, we are confident that you will find some of the best deals as you search every nook and cranny of the internet for a bargain.