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The growth of the online market in the country has transformed the landscape of small businesses in the country while the automobile industry has been the most impacted with the trend.

According to research conducted by yStats.com, the trend shows that the e-commerce industry is growing by 40 percent, an astute that economists never predicted.

Kupatana.com Executive Director, Mr Philip Ebbersten said yesterday that the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) which accounts for 70 per cent of all businesses in the domestic economy, are more likely to be heavily affected by the growing e-commerce industry.

“While virtually all industries have been touched by e-commerce, the automobile industry is among those most strongly impacted. Anyone selling automobiles, both businesses and individual sellers included, should become aware of the impact of e-commerce, as well as how to leverage it,” he said.

Internet access has improved over the past 20 years, with over nine million Tanzanians currently having access to the Internet is fuelling the growth of the country’s e-commerce industry.

He added that a recent report from the Tanzania Trade Development Authority states that digital media is dramatically increasing cost-effectiveness of brands trying to reach their target demographics.

“The essence of e-commerce has helped business enterprises or suppliers with marketing services online by enabling them to place their products and services before their target customers, this potential opportunity helps service providers attract a vast number of consumers by speeding up the flow of information from their end to other heterogeneous consumers,” he said.

Adding that “These forward-thinking brands and sellers can now utilise sophisticated online targeting options on social media, search engines and other online advertising platforms to reach prospective buyers”.

He went on saying that Review Sites and Third Party e-commerce platforms and Internet technology has both made consumerism more convenient and more complicated.

Tanzanians can now buy goods without ever leaving their home; however, filtering the good merchants from the mediocre and fraudulent ones can be difficult.

Every business that sells products or services online assures their buyers that they’re the leading retailer in their vertical, though the simple presence of these competing claims indicates the need for unbiased review and third party sites to which consumers can turn to for objective information on both products and their providers.

Third-party e-commerce platforms, such as Kupatana.com, fill a similar need by enabling smaller retailers to connect with prospective customers directly on a more level playing field with larger sellers.

Read more at: http://allafrica.com/stories/201603011787.html

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