• Saturday, July 13, 2024
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BusinessDay

SME consumers urged to embrace mobile technology

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Nigerian small scale and medium enterprises (SMEs) that are yet to fully embrace the sophisticated emerging trends of mobile technology may be exposed to the high risk of loosing out of business, if they continue to do so, industry stakeholders have warned.

Industry stakeholders, who gathered at the Connect Nigeria e-business fair recently in Lagos, said business owners stand a greater chance of significantly enhancing their businesses if they take the advantage of the enormous trends that were constantly emerging in mobile technology.

“Globally, and in Nigeria, there is a sharp decline in desktop usage of which available data shows that in 2011, desktop usage dropped from 91 percent to 60 percent in Nigeria. With strong predictions that in 2017 all business will be run on mobile technology platforms,” said Ugochi Ugbomeh, manager, Transit Nigeria.

Ugbomeh said with over 15 emerging trends in mobile technology, businesses had become more responsive, more integrated, and more efficient which on the long run reduced the operational cost and bring huge returns on investments.

She emphasised that the advantages of queuing into trends such as the cloud computing, location-based services, mobile applications, and mobile websites were enormous despite the huge cost of data connection, and security lapses.

“For instance, business owners who do not have enough financial resources may not necessarily need to build mobile applications because of its huge financial requirements. However, it is very paramount that business owners start investing on mobile websites,” she said.

She advised, in order to curb the risk of security breaches, which is a notable feature of mobile technology, a clearly defined information technology policy should be put in place, so as to avoid unnecessary information leakages that could mar any business.

Further, she said it was very expensive to have access to data connection in Nigeria, but that should never be an excuse. “If you consider the huge cost of data, you may be discouraged, however, it is very much advantageous to fully embrace mobile technology in businesses than not,” she said.

“The digital marketing aspect of mobile technology also plays significant role in adding value to businesses. Digital marketing is not just about using the internet to advertise your products, it also calls for the content of the advert, its sustenance and engaging the targeted customers,” said Anu Sanya, head of business strategy, Terragon Group.

“With over 45 percent students from the estimated 13 million social media users in Nigeria spending an average of 3 hours on the social media, it is advised that SMEs take advantage of this trend and carry out effective digital marketing that will add value to their businesses,” she said.