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#EcommerceDay2021: E-commerce Day supports the growth of online businesses and retailers

Big industry players in the online retail space, including PayFast, Bidorbuy, PriceCheck, uAfrica and Lulalend are getting behind a new initiative to support the growth of South Africa's e-commerce industry.
#EcommerceDay2021: E-commerce Day supports the growth of online businesses and retailers

We might be in the midst of a global pandemic and recession, but South Africa’s resilience and entrepreneurial nature continues to look for solutions instead of challenges.

One such initiative is the inaugural E-commerce Day, which will take place on 10 March 2021. To grow the local e-commerce sector, some of the biggest players in the industry are banding together to help entrepreneurs start or expand their e-commerce businesses by connecting them with support networks.

“It’s widely believed that South Africa’s economic recovery will need to be driven by small- and medium-sized businesses,” says Tom Stuart, chief marketing officer at Lulalend, one of the partners actively involved in the launch of E-commerce Day.

“Because the e-commerce sector has a very high representation of SMEs, cultivating an innovative and growing e-commerce landscape will have a positive impact across the broader economy and the sector as a whole,” he says.

As the organiser of E-commerce Day, ecommerce.co.za has created a platform that brings various vendors and service providers together to offer exclusive funding opportunities, infrastructure discounts, marketing packages and mentorship. These offers will be available for one day only, with the aim to provide e-commerce businesses with the boost they need to thrive.

E-commerce will play a large role in South Africa’s future economic growth

“Over the past five years, the e-commerce sector has seen a steady and predictable growth trajectory of between 25% and 30% per year,” says Colleen Harrison, head of marketing at PayFast.

This trajectory has been accelerated by Covid-19, with January 2021 seeing a 100% year-on-year increase in total payment volumes processed for the month. With the sector’s growth already fast-tracked by between three and five years, both small and large players alike have a unique opportunity to take the industry as a whole to the next level.

“By creating a nationwide community of online sellers, e-commerce Day helps address the challenges that online entrepreneurs are currently facing,” says Anne-Marie Green, marketing manager at bidorbuy.co.za.

“E-commerce Day is an opportunity for us to reflect on our achievements as a sector but, more importantly, we need to celebrate and support the thousands of small businesses that are the backbone of e-commerce,” she adds. “As online entrepreneurs tend to work remotely, they’re not always aware of innovations happening within their industry or of the support that’s available to help them grow their offering and increase sales.”

This is precisely what E-commerce Day has been created for – to combat silos within the industry and provide entrepreneurs with the tools and expertise they need to grow their businesses.

Growth solutions for e-commerce businesses

Through various events, including webinars, podcasts and expert panels, as well as demos and special offers, E-commerce Day will not only connect e-commerce entrepreneurs to each other and a wider network of e-commerce experts, but showcase the tools and innovations available to build sustainable businesses.

“There is still a lot of growth potential for e-commerce in South Africa’s economy, especially allowing for SME entrepreneurs to start their own businesses with a lower start-up cost than in traditional retail,” says Anita Erasmus, uAfrica’s business manager.

“However, in order to grow the sector, a change in consumer behaviour is required, where online shopping becomes the norm and not the exception. In order to achieve this, industry players need to work together to educate consumers and foster trust with regards to online shopping. This needs to be our number one goal, which is why we’ve partnered with ecommerce.co.za to drive E-commerce Day.”

To view all the activities, promotions and funding opportunities available on 10 March 2021, visit www.ecommerce.co.za/day

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