Over the years doing business online has become very common and convenient around the world. Organizations are no longer only displaying their product online, but trades are taking place for products as well as services.
In the recent years businesses in Pakistan have also taken route for eCommerce websites. This for some businesses has worked out; yet others face certain challenges to operate through a business website.
Here are the five major challenges faced by eCommerce websites in Pakistan;
1. Literacy Issues
There is yet a very larger proportion of Pakistani population that is not literate. Without the knowledge of existence of a thing such as “eCommerce website” one cannot access or avail it.
With only a certain proportion of this entire population using internet; there is yet an even smaller proportion that would shop online.
With the high operating costs of online business this problem shrinks the market even further.
2. Lack of Trust
As the eCommerce website practice and use is somewhat new to the citizens of this country; its acceptance is still building up. People are now starting to look for merchandise online and even willing to purchase it.
The only hurdle here is lack of trust. Without taking a look at the product first people drop their buying decision often; unless it is a brand they trust and have used several times in the past.
In other countries people may consider online shopping as a time saver; but here even after a long search on the internet people would rather spend more of their time and go take a look at the outlet as well.
3. Costs and Delivery
The major purpose of having an eCommerce website is to cut down the cost of business while being able to satisfy the customer just as in any physical professional environment. For merchandise based businesses meeting this criterion is quite a hurdle to their sales and operations.
It takes quite a fortune to even still to run a website, maintain inventory stock, market products and deliver the request. But when it comes to maintaining the credibility; product delivery is a spoiler.
Our transportation system is somewhat unreliable. As long as a business is employing the services of local transport companies it cannot guarantee a time based delivery to customers. With fewer sales only the more costs are incurred.
4. Payment Issues
Profits are what the businesses are working for; but for online businesses convincing people to trust their payment methods is a major issue.
Most online businesses and eCommerce websites in Pakistan demand online payment before the delivery of product or service. Firstly there is not a very large proportion of population in Pakistan that owns a credit card. The general practice here is to pay with cash so people who are even aware of the service do not bother to avail it.
Without a credit card online payments cannot be made and hence is a loss of sale for the business. Unless it is an expensive item that requires amount to be transferred to an account most businesses prefer credit card payments.
On the other hand people who do own a credit card do not trust websites to keep their data safe unless it is a renowned brand that they have dealt with before and trust completely.
5. Nature of Public
There are a few things that will take time for Pakistanis to change. Other than not trusting the online display and only what the eyes see and the hands feel, not trusting the online payment system and wanting to pay with cash there are still a couple of more attributes in the thinking of people here that keep them from online purchases.
Ecommerce websites generally do not have a product return or bargain policy. People here are accustomed to these practices.
It makes people uncomfortable to accept fixed prices. More over people feel insecure to think that a useless item cannot be returned or exchanged.
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These are some major challenges faced by Pakistanis! Which kind of challenges are still missing? Share in your comments……….