The title of this post “How to Ship for Pay-on-Delivery in Nigeria” is not actually the only thing I intended to teach on this post. This is one of the most powerful posts I have ever made this year.
Have you ever tried an e-Commerce and while calculating the cost and other factors, you got stuck when you thought about how you are gonna ship your orders to your customers?
That was my very first experience but I overcame the challenges despite the odds.
This post will show you how a new Logistics company is helping e-Commerce entrepreneurs overcome the hassles of shipment and move on with their marketing order than planning for shipping services.
Have you heard the terms “Ship On Demand”, “Pay On Delivery”, and “Home Delivery” ?
Sometimes you wonder how they are achieving this without having to hire dispatch people through out Nigeria. You may also wonder how you can achieve this without you being everywhere at the same time.
This post will show you how GIG Logistics is dedicating more resources to see that Nigerian e-Commerce entrepreneurs succeed with Home-Delivery and Pay-On-Delivery (Cash on Delivery).
This post is not about how you can start e-Commerce or how you can start selling online. It doesn’t also teach you how you can set up an e-commerce website. It shows you how you can improve your e-Commerce business to a world-class entity.
Here is a link to HOW YOU CAN SET UP AN e-COMMERCE WEBSITE and monetize your effort.
You may also need to read HOW TO SELL DROP-SHIPPING PRODUCTS which requires that you do not need to actually keep inventory of the items you are selling.
Delivery/Order Fulfilment: One serious problem affecting e-Commerce in Nigeria
In one of my seminars on e-Commerce and Drop-Shipping, one young man rose up and expressed one fear that was ravaging almost every one in the audience.
He expressed deep concern about the shipping methods practiced in Nigeria. He also saw how un-affordable services like those of DHL and co could be.
So to him, the e-Commerce idea was not actually unattainable, but a hard game to play in Nigeria.
He is not the only person with such concern.
I had the same feeling and experience when I was starting out on MY WATER POT e-Shop. My problem was that I was selling a very fragile product. In some instances, I would receive a call from buyer after delivery expecting a thank you message only for me to hear that the product was broken.
At that point, the person delivering the item had already taken their money and I would have to bear the cost of sending the items again.
The next problem I had was trust. When people buy from my shop, I see the orders but I don’t see the payments. They call me and ask “what next?”
Each time a customer asks me this question, I understand it to mean, “When are we paying, hope after delivery?” Lol!
You can’t imagine yourself in my shoes, especially when I had to deliver those items myself to be sure that I don’t lose my money and the product at the same time.
In one instance, I sold Mineral Water Pot worth N200,000 to someone I met in Dynapharm (who also saw my shop online). And he demanded I brought the items myself to Warri. And I took all the risk plus my time only for the man to insist that we must add water in to all of them and test them one after the other.
By the time we finished the entire time-consuming process it was night. Then he said “I have a problem paying all your money today. I had already exceeded my transfer limit. Would you mind if I pay you half of this money and transfer the rest to you on Monday? And the day was Saturday.
The fact is, he knew I was not going to say no, afterall, how am I going to carry all the load back to Aba at night? So I agreed.
On Monday he called me and said that all the candles were bad. And they were about 12 in number. He insisted that he cannot pay except I replaced the who candles. On Tuesday, I couriered 12 candles to him in Warri.
After expecting my payment for another 3 days after confirmation that he received the sent candles, I called him and he said, “Sorry o, I have not even checked those items, I traveled to Abuja immediately after receiving the items.”
This continued to linger until 8 months and I lost most of the money I expected to receive.
I have told this story to help you see one of the dangers of selling on credit even if you are going there to deliver the items yourself.
But customers you don’t know may not have trust enough to part with their money and wait for you to either send the items or not.
This is Nigeria where almost every person is expected to be fraudulent. Even as you read this material, you cannot trust me enough as to pay any money to me to buy any of my books except you decide to just through the money out as a sacrifice.
People can only pay money to credible organizations and who have done businesses in known areas for a reasonable time period.
People also trust doing business with organizations that serve bigger organizations or the government.
They won’t pay you if you are starting out
If they know you in person, and they wanna help you, they want you to come to their house or office to demonstrate how this works or to personally install it for them and then take your money.
So this is a major reason to offer Pay-On-Delivery service.
Time sensitive shipping can be a problem if you wanna do it yourself. What if your orders are scatered all around several cities at the same time?
You may not have to spend extra money to put your order in good brands. But what if the products you are selling are actually not you r own?
Well shipping branding can make this easy for you.
Shipping Methods I have tried
In the course of solving the many challenges I encountered while trying to sell and consistently ship my products online, I have tried a number of companies. Let me show you some of these and why I can’t recommend them for e-Commerce business in Nigeria.
DHL is an international company but the major flaw they have is their charges. Their charges are not e-Commerce friendly.
Secondly, they are practicing franchise in most cities.
This makes it almost impossible to have a b2b transaction with them.
They do not allow you to create accounts which will enable you to manage your shipments locally.
– (Chisco Transport)
While their price is considerably low, they are very careless about the waybills. They would pack items marked “Fragile” with heavy bags loaded with Made-In-Aba shoes.
They also do not care anything about time. You are not sure when the item will get to the buyer.
They have lower national coverage.
They have one of the worst customer care systems. Often times, the people working in courier section are pure illiterates and do not understand customer care at all.
They throw away almost all caution as anybody can claim to have goods and be cleared without proper identification.
No tracking of any kind
There is nothing like Pay-On-Delivery when you are using their service.
Not good for e-Commerce in Nigeria.
Other transport Companies that I have used to do my shipping include:
Young Shall Grow Transport, Peace Transport, the Ekesons Transport, and other local transport companies.
They almost operate the same level of service.
Sometimes too, they do not officially send your goods as waybill on register, they do private negotiations with the driver while you have paid for official waybill.
This is very ridiculous.
Why this is a problem
When you incur high charge to ship items someone bought from your website, it reflects on the price of the product. Think about what you are selling as having a market price. So if others are also offering the same product cheaper, expect a bad market soon.
It’s not uncommon to hear loss of shipments in an un-organised systems like the ones I mentioned above. This has a negative way of affecting your business.
I incurred lots of damages when I used the companies above to do my shipping. At a time, I had 6 mineral water pots out of 25 damaged in one shipment.
What else can keep the mind of a customer in good shape if not that he could see how his order is moving. You do not get worried if you are able to see when the goods you ordered left the shores of the country you are buying from and when you expect to have them locally
Same way, we can be sure that our local customers also appreciates it if they can track the movement of their order.
Ironically, most companies that I have used their services do not offer tracking.
Are they credible so much that you or your customers can rely on them?
Like I said before, delay is part of why I stopped using the companies that I mentioned above.
Other factors include: Unpredictability, unprofessional services, No branding (or un-registered brands)
How Logistics has affected e-Commerce in Nigeria
I have met a lot of people who like the concept of e-Commerce but only have one challenge -How to ship what they intend to sell. How has this affected e-Commerce in Nigeria?
Let us look at some areas
Due to lack of registered courier companies who can deliver when needed, the e-commerce business is still suffering blows.
We do not have enough systems who vouch to help track your orders. This also affects trust and willingness to buy online.
We have companies who give different packages for same shipping ideas. They do not have well structured and well defined business idea on how to ship. The customers do not know exactly how next their orders will be delivered. This also affects how they order.
Most companies do not have business prices for shipping items. A business price is a pricing system that considers how price of shipping will affect the total cost of item in the market.
By taking note of this, the company tends to give a shipping cost that will still allow the items to be on a good price despite the extra service involved to deliver it.
As the shipment starts, both the seller and the buyer may have great need to contact the shipping company. This is actually a huge problem for e-Commerce in Nigeria because most companies are not offering any reliable information on who to reach out to after shipment.
I’ve had several experiences where I would call customer care lines of the companies I left my goods with and no body will answer me.
This is actually not a new concept but you hardly find companies offering this services in Nigeria. We have a handful of them in Lagos or Abuja but what about other states?
Look at some of these companies used by some of my clients.
Push (Lagos alone)
Ace (Lagos, PH, Abuja)
Tranex (Partially in all States) with at least one office in a state. This is partial service
RedStar Plc (All major cities in Nigeria and some remote areas). They have slightly higher charges but cover the country much more than others.
In a future post, I will review the services of RedStar Plc to help my readers actually decide whether to use them for their e-Commerce needs.
One powerful thing I found out was that RedStar Plc handles Pay-On-Delivery, Drop off, Home delivery, and other cash receiving services which they remit to the seller within 7 days.
This is because their form of Pay-on-Delivery entails taking the shipment from you without you paying any down payment and delivering to the buyer.
After the buyer makes payment to them, they now take their service charge and remit the balance to the seller.
EMS I have used the Expedited Mail Services which is an extension of the China post for both local and international shipping. This Service is attached to the Nigerian Postal Services but handles classified parcels.
They rank with other express companies but do not have e-Commerce services in their line of duty. So this will be a waste of resources doing your shipping with them due to cost and incomplete services.
NIPOST We all know that Nipost is the National Postal service for Nigeria. Although recently improved, I do not still see any reason to recommend the NIPOST for any e-Commerce related business. They have the cheapest charges but they also have the poorest and most unreliable services.
Almost all their services are at the post office unless you want to spend decades waiting for delivery.
Worse still, they do not have any agenda for Pay-On-Delivery.
(Not recommended for e-Commerce business in Nigeria)
Solution: How to Ship for Pay-on-Delivery in Nigeria
Introducing the GIG Logistics for e-Commerce Pay-on-Delivery.
This post is a review of my experiences with the GIG Logistics over the course of two years. I am calling it the best Logistics company that serves local markets in Nigeria.
What you will read from now explains my findings and experiences of using the GIG Logistics through out the time period.
I am not going to review the Company rather the services. As you read, examine how this will help you improve your e-Commerce business. Find out how your can expand your reach and make more money doing less.
GIG Logistics, How it Works
Under the GiG Logistics, there is a solution called e-Commerce Logistics Services.
– An e-Commerce entrepreneur registers on GIG Logistics website to set up an account.
- On Acceptance/approval, he pays N50,000 for initial shipment charges that may result.
- You will have to fill up some agreement (forms) on the charges, reverse shipping, etc.
- Then your account is fully set up.
- Once payment is confirmed, and all agreements signed and submitted, you will then be registered and can start shipping with GIGL by walking into any GIG logistics center to drop-off or by requesting for pickup
- Under the Pay-On-Delivery arrangement, GIG collects payments for you when they deliver the items to your buyer.
- And transaction feedback is given to you in real time. You can also track shipments since the tracking is two-way (For both seller and buyer)
GiG Logistics e-Commerce Solutions
GIGL e-commerce logistics services is tailored to empower businesses & individuals by offering top-notch courier solutions and excellent customer services.
This is good for you if run an online business, or do Business to Business (B2B) services, Business to Customer (B2C) or Customer to Customer (C2C) or a multi-channel retailer.
A successful e-commerce business needs an effective and reliable logistics service to support its daily delivery needs.
Find below some e-commerce logistics services GiG Logistics offer.
Same Day Delivery:
GIG Logistics Same Day Delivery Service is the perfect choice for time sensitive shipments that need immediate pickup and door-to-door delivery within the shortest time. I can vouch for them that this service is fast, reliable and very easy to use for e-commerce in Nigeria.
Next Day Delivery:
GIG Logistics Next Day Delivery service is not only swift but also very affordable. This is very efficient and Express Delivery Services recommendation for every e-Commerce vendor in Nigeria. It is also perfect for SMEs looking to satisfy their customers and gain a competitive edge in their line of business.
The Cash On Delivery Service (or Pay on Delivery) guarantees secure payment for your goods upon delivery. By including payment as well as the Cash on Delivery service on your online store, you can get a considerable boost in sales as lots of customers opt for this service.
Here is why Pay-on-Delivery System works Customers around Africa have problem trusting online shops. There are very few of them who have already established this trust due to time in business. We have the likes of Jumia, Konga, jiji.com, etc. But you are only starting out or a small business trying to make extra sales online. You may also be known business in one town but want to reach many other buyers or clients in other cities. Buyers want to be sure that what you have shipped to them is actually what they have placed order for. The only way to solve this unique problem is to give them an opportunity to be sure before payment. They also fear that you may abscond with their money if they pay you. "What if this guy is a fraudster posing as a sales organization or e-store?" You also have the need to allow your customers place orders even when the money is not in their account to pay online at the time of purchase. Some people too will not like to make online payment for fear that they will lose their money on internet scam. I know of a young man who have never tried using his ATM card once even on ATM machine. He can't even trust the machines. So he prefers moving into the bank all the time he needs money. This is also a good alternative for you if your online payment system is not working well or the service providers are charging you much.
Remote Location Delivery
When it comes to going the last mile to deliver that special order, GIG Logistics’ Remote Location delivery solution has got you covered. They have an extensive network that can reach customers and suppliers even in rural or difficult-to-access locations where most delivery companies in Nigeria refuse to go.
Hold-For- Collection Service
A Hold-for-Collection service means that your customers do not have to wait at home to receive their order. This means that they will never miss another delivery. Pick-up centres are scattered all around several towns in Nigeria. So your customer can just walk into the centre nearest to him (which you had specified in the order) and collect his parcel.
Reverse Logistics Service
Reverse Logistics Service refers to shipping back items to you if orders are rejected or are not picked up by your customer (Third Party) after several attempts (often 3 attempts). This is charged based on the zone.
I want to point out that GiG Logistics have the cheapest rate of Reverse Logistics. I haven’t experienced any rejection while shipping with GiG Logistics and may not know first hand how they do that. But I contacted some persons who have and the information was awesome.
Why I Recommend GiG Logistics for e-Commerce Pay-on-Delivery Services in Nigeria
Low-budget Home Delivery
Home delivery service with the GiG Logistics is not a cut-throat service. They have made this service so simple that it cost an extra N100 to deliver to homes around Lagos and Abuja.
Effective and Real time Tracking
Tracking makes it possible for customers to view the actual state of their orders. On the internet, your customers will be able to find exactly the position of their order at any point in time.
Both you and your customers receive SMS alert on movement actions relating to your shipments
Standard Pay-on-Delivery Service
The Pay-on-Delivery at GiG Logistics is second-to-none. They ensure that they nurse your consignment to the location without any dent.
I have shipped the mineral water pot which is a very fragile product to almost all around Nigeria without complains about breakage.
My customers have always been satisfied.
Pay-on-Delivery with GiG Logistics guarantee almost immediate release of funds collected for you. I have explained below how Pay-on-delivery with GiG logistics works.
Ship on demand at GiG Logistics is a service solution which requires you to send your orders either by calling GiG Logistics for pick up or you bring the package to their office for immediate shipment (Office Drop-off).
Pick up requires that you call GiG Logistics to come to your shop or office to take the package and ship on your behalf.
Office Drop off is what happens when you take the package to GiG Logistics centre and apply to send them to your customers.
Cost Effective (e-Commerce Friendly)
The e-Commerce solution at GiG Logistics is so affordable and was prepared with you in mind. It focuses on Market Price system.
I did explain that market price system looks at making shipping cost not to drive the cost of products high and thus affecting the seller in fierce competitive environment.
What about the N5o,000 deposit you make at first? This will cover the shipment charges that you will incur at the start. It looks like a prepaid service where you do not have to make further deposits to ship your orders. All you do is to send the items to GiG Logistics for shipment.
Special Packaging for Fragile items
I know about this because I send fragile items via the GiG Logistics. Look at How the Mineral Water Pot looks. So having worked with them, I can defend this service under oath. They know how to protect fragile items.
So if your e-commerce involves sending breakables do not hesitate, go to GiG Logistics.
And we are talking about e-Commerce. This means that you stand to send the items all the time to different people in different cities. What can be more reassuring than getting to know a company that is ready all the time.
Granted, the GiG Logistics’ Home Delivery Service is still available in only these 6 locations:
Port Harcourt (PHC)
All other locations aside from these offer ONLY terminal pickup.
But I can tell you that they have good reach through out Nigeria. They serve more towns and villages than most other courier services.
What you can do is, get to any GiG Logistics office near you and make first-hand inquiry on how you can do home delivery at some places not listed here. Believe me that something can be tailored to work for you.
If there is anything that took me to GiG Logistics, it is the speed which they involve while dispatching orders. The e-Commerce solution at GiG Logistics understand what can happen when items bought online are delayed.
They do not wait for the next time their passenger bus will leave. No! Logistics is a very special and independent department.
GiG Logistics is a known brand and they transfer their National acceptance to your orders. I remember receiving a whatsapp message yesterday and the message reads, “Do you accept cash-on-delivery?” And my answer was yes. Then I explained
“I do not just accept Pay-on-Delivery, I use the best company, GiG Logistics, which guarantees that you do not spend extra money to receive the Mineral Water Pot at your doorstep.”
Guess what, the woman placed her order immediately.
I sealed that deal because the name was not just a company but has a powerful brand following it.
Have you tried to ship items with companies like Chisco transport or some other transport companies that claim to have effective courier? My experience was very discouraging. I lost some orders because there was no defined service agreement
GiG Logistics has agreement tailored down to every service you are signing up for.
They also have a statement of insurance which will further cover your shipments.
They are very reliable.
Proactive Customer Care
They have one of the best customer care personnel in Nigeria. These guys were specifically trained to handle orders and inquiries relating to shipping.
They know the risks involved and also understand that the customer has the fear that after spending money to buy items, something injurious might happen. They have good ideas on how to deal with worrisome customers.
They also reach consignees and consignors as soon as their orders are shipped or delivered. Most times this is done with very friendly SMS.
Separate from Transport Section
What can be more mind-blowing than the fact that GiG Logistics treat Parcel services as special and do not have any pinch of mix with passenger transport section?
This makes it possible that orders leave when they should and not wait until the next passenger bus is set to move.
More especially true is that delivering parcels as such will guarantee that orders are not mistakenly dropped off on the way while customers are coming down.
Some Logistics companies do this and it often results in loss of items before they get to the terminal.
You can receive your order payments on cash (if you prefer) or directly wired each time to your bank account. You can also decide to allow you payments to be held by the company as part of your wallet.
It all depends on you.
Well-Defined Zoning System
There is no guessing as to how much possible you can pay for items going to particular locations from yours. This is because they already have at GiG Logistics well-defined zoning system with prices attached to them.
This makes it possible for you to calculate the cost of your shipment of particular items to any location.
You can add this cost to your website during orders or make it available during payment.
This will also help you decide which shipment can be marked Free-Shipping on your website.
Although home delivery service at GiG Logistics is not available in all states or all cities, they have the best coverage of the country. Try to compare their coverage to any other company and see for yourself.
How to Ship for Pay-on-Delivery in Nigeria, A Conclusion
There is no two ways about it, e-Commerce is taking over almost all aspect of business around the world and Nigeria is deeply getting involved.
With the successes recorded by companies like Jumia and Konga, it has become a project for many e-Commerce businesses to want to start delivering at homes and also giving Pay-on-Delivery services.
This has not been easy as we have consistently noted but with the introduction of the GiG Logistics e-Commerce Solutions which we have treated on this post, small businesses can now comfortably render cash-on-delivery as part of the offers to have more businesses or make more sales.
What are you waiting for ? Join the very few e-commerce entities already succeeding by offering Pay-on-Delivery as part of your package.
I have a few recommendations to make.
Are you still in want of what to sell or how to start an e-Commerce business?
Read More about it on 22 Drop Shipping Products Anyone can Sell Online
In my subsequent posts, I am going to review some other companies that have established dedicated e-Commerce and Drop Shipping Pay-on-Delivery or Cash-on-Delivery systems.
In that article, I will reveal another e-Commerce Solution that has changed how Pay-on-Delivery is done in recent times.
Theirs involves collecting the shipping cost from the payments made by the customers and delivering the balance to you afterwards.
Doesn’t this sound very interesting?
Look out for my next post on e-Commerce and Cash-on-Delivery.
Now you know How to Ship for Pay-on-Delivery in Nigeria,
What stops you from sharing this idea with a few friends?
Understand that you may still have some friends who are struggling with How to Ship for Pay-on-Delivery in Nigeria.
You may be doing them a lot of good.
Also, if this post makes sense to you and you want to ask some questions or make some contributions on How to Ship for Pay-on-Delivery in Nigeria, feel free to leave a comment.
From Mendoh Urch Olivers, thank you for showing up and do practically start an e-commerce business having learnt How to Ship for Pay-on-Delivery in Nigeria