What to consider before choosing a platform for your online store

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The crop of micro business owners promoting their trade today is probably the most fortunate in the history of commerce. Inventions in technology, particularly payment technology, continue to redefine the market place, access to customers and the factors that affect demand and supply. Limitations like distance and time have long been eroded with the advent of e-commerce and the continuous innovation on digital payment techniques continues to promote business inclusion, enabling anyone to do business online, regardless of their size or structure.
A major game-changer is the introduction of all-inclusive platforms that provide avenues for businesses to display their goods and get paid as well. The Nigerian market has three major players owning this space. You are either thinking of creating a store on Paystack’s Business place, signing up with Flutterwave for a barter store or promoting your services on the Quickteller Business storefront. While the availability of options immensely benefits the business owner, it also places the weight of choice on their shoulders.
Which of these platform options is best suited to your business? What factors should you consider before choosing one over the other?
Admittedly, all these platforms essentially provide the same service. They save you the expense and pressure of getting a developer to build you an e-commerce site that you’d have to maintain. In a few clicks, you can create your mini e-commerce store, upload pictures, fill in prices and terms and extract a shareable link that is adaptable to any platform. Your customers can click on the link to see what you offer, click to buy and also click to pay…all at no cost to you. There are however minute differences that should influence your choice.
Flutterwave’s strength is in its adaptability to search engines, implying that your mini store is more searchable on this platform and could come up as part of a Google search result. Being the first Fintech to offer this service, Flutterwave has also had more time to improve on the service, leveraging user feedback.  Paystack on the other hand is popular for the swiftness of its processes. Everything happens quickly and you can start selling as soon as you desire. The large base of businesses they possess may be advantageous as well, providing you with a sense of belonging and the assurance that comes with being part of the multitude.
The Quickteller Business storefront also has its advantages, especially for businesses just embracing online trade. To begin with, if you already have a Quickteller account, you are halfway in. You will only be required to sign in with your Quickteller credentials and onboard your business. It’s also been said that Quickteller Business may offer more security although Quickteller Business typically takes a while longer than other platforms, considering the KYC documents required and the detailed processes. This is understandable though; transaction security is one of the factors that elevated Interswitch to its current status. They have always been known to prioritize security over quick fixes.
More so, businesses signed onto the Quickteller Business platform get to enjoy the advantage of being exposed to the over 5 million customers already signed onto the Quickteller platform.
At the end of it all, it’s a bottom-line conversation for you as a business owner, especially if you are just starting out. This may be Quickteller Business’ biggest advantage so far, the fact that new users of the platform do not have to pay any transaction fees for the first three months after they sign up. Three months may not seem like a long time until you calculate how much expense paying zero charges could save you. That money can be channeled into growing your business, either by increasing stock or promoting your business more.
Eventually, the goal is to choose a platform that supports your business goals and enables your business to thrive. Suffice to say a transition from one platform to the other is also possible if you find that the grass is indeed greener on the other side.

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