3rd GMA Webinar Series highlights growing opportunities in retail and e-Commerce

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Martin Ankrah, Director Global Media Alliance (GMA)

The third edition of the GMA Webinar Series, which focused on unlocking digital transformation in the retail industry, has been held successfully via zoom to discuss e-Commerce, digital marketing and the ‘new normal’ in the industry.

The webinar took place on August 25 and featured three resource persons, and was attended virtually by hundreds of participants via zoom and Facebook and broadcasted Live on e.TV Ghana.

Bennet Otoo, Public Relations and Communication Manager of Jumia Ghana, shared insights into the opportunities for online retail businesses amid COVID-19.

“The online retail business allows you to run a business without setting up a physical space, aggregate niche products and build customer loyalty. You can start your own business and you neither need to have an office space nor have your employees working with you. You can have all your fulfilment services on one side, your customer services on another side and your headquarters at yet another side,” he stated.

Joseph Paddy, Public Relations Officer of the Ghana Union of Trade Associations (GUTA), elaborated some of the challenges faced by GUTA members in an attempt to explore e-Commerce. “Many of our over 3,000,000 members lack the adequate training and education required to run their businesses online.

“Others are also deterred by the cost component of mobile data for Internet and the purchase of a smartphone that can take good pictures to advertise their wares. The issue of trust is also a challenge for some sector association members who have had unfortunate experiences with virtual transactions in the past,” he revealed.

He however admitted that the association is open to receive training from organisations such as Jumia to adapt to the ‘new normal’.

Denise Asare, General Manager of Accra Mall Limited, expressed the importance of the human element even in the midst of a digital transformation. “New technologies can be introduced to add an enhanced version of what we experience; but the truth is that on this earth we’re dealing with human beings, and human beings will constantly crave that human touch.

“Hybrid is definitely the future, and it is creating an opportunity for concept stores – meaning when you go into a shop, it is not just about the regular transaction of picking something off the shelf, going to the till and paying for it. It will now have to be about an experience that you had in the shop.”

Accra Mall has also prioritised safety as it continues to periodically disinfect all shops, ensure mandatory handwashing and sanitising as well as ensuring that all shoppers wear their nose masks before entry into the mall. Amid the pandemic, management of the mall has also provided rent-reliefs to its tenants to be able to ease the burden of the pandemic.

The series was hosted by Fati Ali-Shaibu, a Broadcast Journalist at Global Media Alliance Broadcasting Company. The Global Media Alliance webinar series was partnered by eTV Ghana, Happy FM, YFM, the Business and Financial Times and Perception Management International (PMI).

Global Media Alliance (GMA) is an Integrated Marketing Communications Company with over 20 years of experience and expertise in PR and Media Consultancy, Event Management and Brand Activations, Creative Designs & Production and Digital Innovations.

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