Logistics has been identified as one of the primary challenges facing Nigeria’s retail sector. Distance to the markets, inadequate transport system and limited infrastructure make it difficult for retailers to buy and convey goods to their stores with ease.
Innovative B2B platforms like Alerzo have identified this infrastructure deficit, and engaged technology to change the delivery landscape for retailers of mostly fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) in the country.
Through technology, retail business owners’ interface with manufacturers and approved distributors where they have access to numerous goods which they easily order and get delivered for free. Since 2019, Alerzo has been delivering free of charge to its customers. So, these micro businesses no longer have to go through stress or the perils on the road in obtaining inventory as it is more convenient and safer to shop on e-commerce platforms.
Speaking on this, Alerzo CEO, Adewale Opaleye stated: “We’ve made the restocking process easier by making them available on simple channels like USSD codes and WhatsApp. More importantly, we are also training retailers in rural communities on how they can order goods using our app. Improved internet penetration is also helping because many of them have smartphones, they only need little guidance and teaching.”
Interestingly, B2B e-commerce platforms provide warehousing and fulfillment solutions to suppliers. Opaleye explained that in alignment with the firm’s commitment to serve thousands of retailers on its platform and in turn promote retail business in the country, over 500 vehicles and 40 warehouses are used for FMCG supply directly from the manufacturers and genuine distributors to retailers.
Instead of having to spend money on transport through and from the open markets, these retailers channel the money to order more goods which increases their profits. In essence, through innovative logistics systems e-commerce platforms are providing Nigeria retailers better experiences of doing business.