The growth of the internet around the globe has led to the emergence of new forms of business, which have drawn their customers from the ever-increasing number of internet users. One example of such an internet-based company is the Dealfish, which is a Nigerian-based online-classified business. The business is featured in a case study that evaluates some of the challenges that it faces in attracting certain masses to its online business (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013).
The company faces a challenge in attracting a large market in the form of internet users in Nigeria. The case study demonstrates the behaviors of the Nigerian online customers, and the business operating on the online platform in this country (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). The case study also provides a strategy on how the Nigerian consumers can change from their off-line buying techniques to the widely available online market (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). This marketing report is based on a case study. It provides analysis for Dealfish Nigeria in terms of its strategic objectives and changes that it needs to adopt.
The situational analysis of any business allows the provision of major issues that are affecting the business (Ajimoko 2011). For any organization that purposes to be successful in the market, there are special changes that it should adopt in the process. This section analyses the internal environment of Dealfish’s business, the customer profile, competitors, market analysis, and environmental analysis. The strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats to the business are also provided.
Dealfish Nigeria is a well-structured business with a management style that is compatible with other successful organizations. The company is a subsidiary of another larger company operating outside the Nigerian Market. The mother company, Nasper, sought to invest in the Nigerian online market due to the rapidly growing number of internet users and the large Smartphone base that the country enjoys. The company saw an opportunity for online marketing where the Dealfish business would act as an online store where traders and customers could interact (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). The organizational structure for Dealfish is simple consisting of a country manager, office administrators, content management, customer service, and product ambassadors.
The business has a large subscription in the country with over fifty employees working at various levels. Dealfish links prospective product sellers to prospective buyers, thus acting as a go-between (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). The company is essentially an online classified business, with the initial category of products that it dealt with being cars, general listing, jobs, and properties (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). The company engages in diversity. Diverse products are sold and bought on the website. According to Vikulov and Butrin (2014), diversity allows organizations to capture a large customer base, especially those operating online.
As stated above, Dealfish Nigeria acts as a link between prospective sellers and buyers of special groups of products. The company allows customers to shop for the products that they need in the comfort of their living rooms while at the same time getting the best prices for the prospective products. Customers are mainly the buyers and sellers of these products. The Nigerian market has a large number of internet users, with a significant proportion of them accessing the internet through their Smartphones.
Therefore, the business targets these customers by ensuring that they are able to shop online and/or sell some of the products that are no longer useful to them. The aspect of customer demographics is predetermined, with the sellers being required to be over 18 years of age (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013).
Several other online-classified companies occupy the Nigerian Market into which the company ventured. These companies provide the same services as Dealfish. They offer competition on this front. Olatunji (2011) observes that competition is a key market driver. Businesses should devise effective methods of dealing with their competitors. In the case of Dealfish, the main competition came from Nairalist, which is an online classifieds company that offered similar services to those that Dealfish would offer. The company had been in service for a few years but had managed to create a large base of customers that contributed to its profitability.
The other company that offers direct competition is Jobberman, which provides its customers with a range of jobs that were available in the country. However, this company was solely offering jobs classified services, as opposed to the diverse services that Dealfish offers. Jobberman was not the only industry player in terms of offering job-specific classifieds, with some of the other competitors being Hotnigeriajobs.com and naijahotjobs.com (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). These organizations were particularly competitive, with Naijahotjobs.com attracting young jobseekers while having a high ranking in the country.
The other competitors that offer direct competition to Dealfish include Bunchbay and cheki.com (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). The Bunch Bay website was a direct competitor to Dealfish since it provided users with a variety of services, most of which were similar to those offered by Dealfish. The company also had a number of incentives for customers, and hence its stiff competition to Dealfish (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). Cheki.com.ng was not a Nigerian-based company.
However, it offered services to its customers in Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda, and Tanzania (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). The company was also described as focusing on the regional sale of cars, thus allowing its customers to buy and sell cars (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). The other significant competitor for Dealfish is Google trader, which is a Nigerian subsidiary of the Google Company (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). These competitors are important to the operations of Dealfish since they provide it with the stiff competition that keeps it focused and working towards new strategies. However, competition is common in all markets. Dealfish should be focused on how to stay competitive (Bloom, Genakos, Sadun & Van Reenen 2012).
The Nigerian online market is a large market for Dealfish. It represents over 90 million users (Ewah 2013). The number of internet users in Nigeria is said to have increased after the 1994 commercialization of the internet, with more businesses being set up on the internet as a result. One of the leading social sites is reported to have a user base of over 48 million individuals. Any company that managed to penetrate this market ends up being successful. The adoption of e-commerce in the Nigerian market was low at the time of the case study. Dealfish had to face the hesitancy of customers and sellers engaging online (Ewah 2013).
The market has underlying growth inhibitors such as low ICT penetration, poor quality of telecommunication, and absence of local internet provides (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). The international calling rates are also high. This situation is also recognized as inhibiting the trade for the companies that wish to invest in the line of business that Dealfish follows (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013). The macro-economic factors that are significant in the performance of any company include economic performance, employment, and interest rates (Ajimoko 2011). These are favorable for Dealfish since it is not largely affected by these factors. The other micro-economic factors affecting the company are also positive in the region. The business will experience favorable growth.
The environmental analysis of an organization provides an idea of the likely challenges or opportunities for any organization (Kurt & Hulland 2013). Some of the factors that are important to consider include the performance of the local and regional economies and the likely effects of this strategy on the business. Dealfish operates in an environment where the key players control a significant part of the economy and the market. The internet users are increasing in number, with the industry being described as competitive. A host of regulations has been made in Nigeria with regard to the use of the internet. However, this regulation has mostly been favorable for the company.
The other factor that is important to consider in relation to the operating environment of Dealfish is the legislation that is in place (Amangala & Wali 2013). The relevant legislation in terms of sales over the internet is favorable to the company in Nigeria since it allows the exchange of information about products freely (Ewah 2013). The tax regime is also favorable. Population characteristics such as high density among others allow the company to market its services to many users.
Dealfish Nigeria has several factors that are important in its SWOT analysis. A SWOT analysis is important in organizations since it allows the formation of appropriate strategies regarding the market. It looks at the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats that are important in shaping the organization’s decisions.
Dealfish has a number of strengths that are important in determining its competitiveness. A major strength is an experience that has accumulated out of dealing in other countries. The mother company has had significant success in other markets, and particularly in online businesses. The company also had the availability of large capital to start a business in Nigeria. Hence, this asset allowed it to venture into the internet market with considerable success (Alos, West & Anegbe 2013).
The main weakness for Dealfish is its inability to convince clients of the safety of their engagement in online trading. Customers have increasingly expressed worries over the safety of buying or selling products over the internet. It is vital that the company convinces them.
Dealfish has many opportunities in the Nigerian online market. The market is large. Despite the presence of other players and competitors, there is the possibility of increasing sales and presence. The other opportunity is the large subscriber base for Smartphones in the country. Dealfish can utilize this base through the creation of special applications for its services.
Competition is the main threat for Dealfish. Many companies are increasingly aggressive in the sector. This situation can cost the company in terms of revenue. The other threat is posed by the increasing wave of cybercrime. Cybercrime is a threat to the business because it can affect the company’s customers in terms of the trust for its services.
Summary of Key Issues
The key issues in Dealfish business include how to develop trust for customers, and/or how to increase the market share in this lucrative market. In any organization, performance is affected by how well the business is able to capitalize on the market while creating a large customer base (Ajimoko 2011). The company also faced the challenge of entering a market that had already been occupied by different market players, including the various online trading companies. The market segmentation that the company employs is largely geographic, targeting the Nigerian market and young buyers. The Nigerian market is considerably young. Most of the internet users will offer good business for the company (Ewah 2013).
The company has resources available in the operating environment, including a favorable economy and legal structure. Some of the other issues that are important in the assessment include the management structure that emerges as typical of any internet company. However, the organization needs a marketing structure and objectives, with this structure playing the role of increasing the customer base while demystifying some of the fears that the customers have in terms of security.
Dealfish has to formulate marketing objectives that will enable it to become more competitive in the market while increasing consumer awareness. The main objectives should be to increase the awareness of the internet users in Nigeria on the services that it offers and to reassure the potential clients of the safety of interacting through the site. The business also needs to increase its presence in the Nigerian market. The other objective is to enable the business to be the market leader in an effort of increasing competitiveness.
The company needs to reach as many customers as possible. The adopted marketing strategy should be adequate to achieve this goal. The main marketing strategy that the business should adopt is the use of the internet, which is the main area that it engages in (Kurt & Hulland 2013). The next marketing objective that the business should adopt is to increase the marketing drive through other forms of media apart from the internet. These forms of marketing are also effective. If adopted, they can result in increased performance for the organization.
Targeting and Position
The target for the business is a large number of internet users in Nigeria. The target should be specific, with the decisions and strategies being focused on how to reach the most number of clients (Ewah 2013). The other target that the business marketing strategy should have is an increase in the market share and the preference by consumers and sellers. The target should be to reach many internet users in Nigeria while ensuring that they (internet users) are aware of the services that Dealfish offers.
The targets for Dealfish should be measured through the performance of the company in terms of revenue, consumer index, and other objective means of measurement (Ewah 2013). The market position for the company should also be followed closely as the main index of the performance. There are other positions that are important to Dealfish, including the ranking in the local market and the internet subscription and usage. Access to the business site should also be free for people using it to transact and/or allow more traffic at the site.
The strategies that Dealfish should adopt should lead to the satisfaction of the objectives that are stated above. The main strategy should include more marketing campaigns for the business. The growth strategy that Dealfish contemplated in its entry into Nigeria was the buying of an already existing business enterprise. However, this move was reportedly not promising. The mother company resulted in the establishment of its own business, and thus the formation of the Dealfish business. The growth strategy for the company should involve the search for partners such as other online companies that can provide a link between the business and other prospective customers who including Google and its subsidiary in Nigeria, which can be crucial in marketing the company online.
The other strategy that should be adopted to increase growth in the number of clients for Dealfish is the expansion into the regional and international markets. The internet is a global phenomenon, with many countries making laws that are aimed at facilitating trade using this platform (Ajimoko 2011). Therefore, Dealfish should expand its services to include the large market that will be available following international expansion. The neighboring countries will be examples of international markets. According to Ajimoko (2011), the internet has facilitated international trade, with companies widely selling their products and services at better rates.
Selection of Competitive Advantage
For any company that operates in a market with many competitors, it should ensure that it adopts unique ways of establishing a competitive advantage over competitors in the market (Kurt & Hulland 2013). The Nigerian classifieds market has a number of key players as earlier stated, which offer competition to Dealfish. Therefore, it is necessary for it to select an efficient way of ensuring a competitive advantage over other companies. Some of the ways that the business uses include the offering of platforms where people can sell all types of goods and services, including searches for jobs. However, the business should offer a unique class of services to its users.
Some of the strategies that are important in ensuring a competitive advantage over other companies include the provision of guarantees for the services that it offers. Security is a major concern in the present age of the internet. The company also faces the threat of cybercrime (Ewah 2013). The company should increase its presence in the country by offering services at a cheaper rate compared to the already existing companies. The Nigerian market is diverse with different kinds of customers (Ewah 2013). Diversity can be considered the strength of an organization if used effectively. Dealfish should offer services that are specific to the religious diversity in Nigeria. The business should carry out a review of the business environment in the country while instituting changes that are specific to the needs of the various customers.
Marketing Mix Programme
The main strategy that Dealfish should adopt is the use of online marketing. The company has a strong online presence, with most of the revenue being used in marketing on the internet. The business should capitalize on the platform because it locates its services mainly on the internet. The different marketing techniques on the internet should be employed by the business. A marketing mix involves the use of many forms of marketing to enable an organization to be better positioned in the industry and the market (Ewah 2013). It allows companies to evaluate the most effective strategies in their marketing techniques and the best ways of reaching the largest consumer base (Kurt & Hulland 2013).
The next form of marketing that Dealfish should employ is the print media that has been described as having a significant effect on the visibility of organizations (Kurt & Hulland 2013). Newspapers should be the main print media that should be applied in the marketing mix. The country has a large population of internet users. Most of them are also avid television viewers. Therefore, Dealfish should engage in the production of a marketing campaign on television networks since the strategy will lead to increased access to the website. The company should also run promotional competitions over the internet, with customers being awarded for their loyalty to the organization. This strategy should be an effective way of increasing the consumer knowledge of the business and/or what it entails.
The marketing strategy adopted by a company should be specific and strategic to the area in which it is situated. Dealfish is an online-classified company in Nigeria that has managed to enter this bazaar while attracting a significant proportion of the market. The country has a large base of internet users, with a large proportion of them accessing the internet through their Smartphones. This fact created opportunities for Dealfish despite the presence of stiff competition in the industry. This report has looked at the company and the various strategies that it has adopted using the provided case study. It has also provided an appropriate marketing mix and the strategies that it should adopt to remain competitive.
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