Plastic Branding: Zimbabwean Brands Refusing to Go Electronic whilst Money has gone Plastic

Volume wise, more than 80% of transactions in Zimbabwe are done using plastic money, yet the brands and business whose transactions are being done electronically have not gone electronic.

If most transactions are now electronic in Zimbabwe, what stops every brand and business website offering payment or shopping options to reduce walk-ins, increase shopping, convenience and brand reach in the market.

Zimbabwe’s banking system has become very efficient, as compared to a few years ago when most technology users were up in arms with the sector. 

In a subtle manner, the banking fraternity sorted themselves out, but are now waiting for consumers, brands and businesses to follow through by providing integration.

Many Zimbabwean brands and businesses, large or small, have defragmented approaches to electronic commerce, with in ability to offer even payment redirects from their websites to electronic payment platforms.

It is now easy and very much possible for anyone, anywhere, to log on to a product or service website, place an order, pay for that order without leaving their computer or mobile phone, and just wait for the delivery of the products.

There is nothing that stops a clothing store or fashion designer having a payment option integrated into their website, where, one picks a pair of trousers, a shirt, pair of socks, and so forth, place them in a shopping basket and pay instantly from their website.

Clear Horizons, a management and corporate affairs consulting company based in Harare, has gone e-commerce, making it possible for clients to order company registration or tax clearance services and pay for them online from their e-commerce enabled website www.clearhorizons.co.zw.

There is need for Zimbabwean brands to go plastic, to be in the face of their consumers just as electronic transactions cannot be avoided. Electronic money is a new way of communicating between consumers and businesses, yet that communication is being limited to transactions. 

Brands are able to integrate advertising concepts into every transaction, for example just as Ecocash sends you an advert with every transaction that you have done. Ecocash also advertises and pushes their agenda through other platforms to make sure that the consumer is always thinking of them.

From the Copper King website, a plumber in Zimbabwe can now walk into a Hardware store on his mobile phone and computer, place an order for products. See www.copperking.co.zw. 

Bullet trains are possible, only if owners of brands and businesses move with times as electronic money does. The technology is ready, the transaction behaviour of consumers ready, but only brands and businesses are not taking advantage of this.

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