An Alternative To The Ecommerce Revolution – #GoingMobile
Mobile businesses offer a positive alternative to eCommerce stores and brick and mortar facilities.
The Covid-19 pandemic disrupted lives and livelihoods globally, forcing businesses and consumers to adopt new digital behaviors. The pandemic brought a lot of uncertainty, in response consumers started to be more cautious in their spending habits and brand loyalty dropped significantly. In addition to this, consumers demanded more convenience and ease when it came to making buying decisions.
Large-scale investments were made in digital solutions by businesses to try and keep up with changing demands. These investments were evident in the rise of digital advertising, shopping Apps and eCommerce stores. The businesses that joined this trend and were systematic and strategic in their approach saw great returns on their investments. Examples would be Mr. Price and Woolworths, whose online stores brought in revenues of R502 million and R1.6 billion respectively in the 2020/2021 fiscal year. The shift to digital is an innovative approach to bringing services and products closer to the consumer for many businesses. However, it is not always the best solution for some service-based businesses as face-to-face interactions are required.
An alternative is taking your business services on the road through mobility or what is termed as mobile businesses. A mobile business is exactly what it sounds like—a business that allows you to go on the road, travelling to various locations to provide your products and services to your customers. Mobile business owners can transport all the necessary tools and equipment in their vehicles, and provide their services to customers at their homes, other locations or right out of their vehicles. Examples of mobile businesses include food trucks, mobile beauty salons, mobile pet groomers, mobile dental clinics, mobile offices and more. Recently we had an example of a mobile bank that was launched by ABSA bank with five mobile units in the Gauteng province.
Mobile businesses are not only a creative and innovative way of bringing convenience and ease to consumers, but to the business owners as well. Here are some of the benefits of going mobile:
- Flexibility and market expansion – if you can move your business, you can increase your customer base by setting up at special events or high-traffic areas.
- Increase brand awareness – your company vehicle serves as built-in advertising as you move around.
- Cost saving – there are fewer costs associated with starting a mobile business as you do not need a dedicated bricks and mortar location or a large inventory, amongst other business overheads.
Mobile businesses offer a positive alternative to brick and mortar facilities and eCommerce stores. They can also be used to support both brick and mort facilities and eCommerce stores. They offer flexibility and convenience for the business owner and the consumer; we are excited to see the continued adoption of mobility across different industries.