The call was made during a recent panel session on e-commerce themed: ‘Increasing market access and optimizing business models through e-commerce,’ in the second edition of the East African Business and Entrepreneurship Conference and Exhibition 2017 (EABECE) held last week in Dar es Salaam.
The EABECE aimed at providing an opportunity for business-to-business (B2B) and government-to-business (B2G) engagement.
It is a platform for financiers and innovators to strengthen entrepreneurship in the EAC, a regional one-stop centre for investment and trade opportunities.
A panelist from an online shopping and delivery firm, Jumia Tanzania, Albany James, said online business was faced with hardships in marketing products.
“Even though in today’s world online business is the way to go, it is always so hard to convince clients online and lure businesspersons and entrepreneurs to an e-commerce platform,” he said.
He said online business provides sellers and buyers the opportunity to meet while increasing business sales and income.
The official from Jumia firm said through huge online technologies investments, his firm was committed to provide easy business operations.
According to him, the backbone of any business lied on knowing your customers, where to find them and communicating with them effectively.
He said firms needed to ensure they conducted marketing and advertising to sell their products just as what their firm and any other firms does to increase volumes and income.
- panelist from an online travel agency, Kijanga Geofrey, said business owners have the opportunity to shift to online platforms and increase their visibility and eventually their revenues.
According to him, reports showed that Tanzania was among the 20 fastest growing countries in the world, adding that among the leading sectors were hospitality, infrastructure, finance and business.
He said the country was also showing great progress in the ICT sector where statistics indicated that 40 per cent of Tanzanians had access to the internet network and the population had increased to 19.86 million in 2016 from 17.26 million in 2015.
“With an 83 per cent internet penetration rate, Tanzania as a tourism market has the potential for growth in the e-commerce sector,” he noted.
Currently, telecommunications is among the fast growing sectors in the country and plays an important role in financial inclusion among the people.