Conveniences of the Online World

With internet costs in Kenya quite high and suspicion about trading online on the same level, not many people are transacting online. However, for me, it’s a regular thing. I can’t tell you what a convenience online transactions have been for me, I’ll just illustrate with a few examples:

Smart Baby

I don’t remember who introduced me to Smart Baby facebook page but I am grateful they did. They stock really nice clothes – that you can’t find on the overrated Biashara Street. I usually go through the Facebook page, select what I like and order through email. My order is delivered the following day to the office, where I pay cash on delivery. I could have them delivered at home but since I live way out of town, the delivery charges will be too high. I pay Ksh. 150 for delivery to Upperhill. Quite affordable, no? Update: They actually deliver for only Ksh 200 to places like Mlolongo.

Some of the clothes on offer at Smart Baby

Some of the clothes on offer at Smart Baby

They actually have a website now and it’s much easier to browse through stuff. You can pay through M-Pesa. I think next month I will shop through the website. (Although it currently says: THIS IS A DEMO STORE- PLEASE DO NOT PLACE ANY ORDERS). My son tends to outgrow clothes fast (as do most babies) so I buy new outfits each new month or so. If you are going to buy clothes from there, buy one or two sizes bigger. The clothes might say 3 months but they fit a 0-month old baby (at least for my baby).

And for those who prefer old school shopping, please have a _. And then head to their shop in Kileleshwa (which opened well after the online shop).

Elegantly African

This is a shopping website for fashion accessories. I need a new watch and when I saw the pictures of the watches they have I wanted one.

A photo of the new watch. The glasses though, I had to go to Optica for the checkup. If only I could do it online too..

A photo of the new watch. The glasses though, I had to go to Optica for the checkup. If only I could do it online too..

I got it for Ksh. 1,000, paid through my Visa Debit card and it was delivered free to my office. So Elegant. So African. (Seems the watches are out of stock at the moment, just checked their site).

Diapers

For my diaper shopping, I was going to Biashara Street to buy them, so I can buy them at Ksh 50 bob cheaper than at the supermarkets. A colleague at work gave me the distributor’s number, I called them, made an order, paid through their M-Pesa paybill number and they delivered to my office free of charge. Okay, it’s not online shopping, more of over-the-phone shopping but it’s still quite convenient. You have to buy in Bulk though.

Huggies Gold Diapers, they're rather expensive but they've become my favorite brand

Huggies Gold Diapers, they’re rather expensive but they’ve become my favorite brand

Imperial Bank

I finally signed up for online banking so I can check my statements and do some transactions. I have accounts with both Equity (it has its advantages) and Imperial Banks and they both have online banking services. With Imperial, the forms were sent to me via email, I then filled and dropped them off. I’m sure I can download internet-banking forms online from the Equity site so I shall sign up soon.

Who doesn't do this anymore?

Who doesn’t do this anymore?

Dash2Do.com

Have you ever had an errand that required you to attend to it during working hours? Things like banking, registration of births (etc), picking documents from one place to another..

I started the birth certificate application for my son. I had to steal some time off work to do it. I filled in the forms, then was told to come later to pay for the processing (they do the verification for almost a week!). When I went to pay, they had run out of receipts so I walked back to the office in frustration. When I went the second time to pay, it was 2 p.m. and I found a huge crowd of people by the entrance waiting. If I was to wait with that crowd, I’d lose more than an hour of working so again I walked back to the office in frustration and decided I’d come earlier. Going back the 3rd time to pay, I was there by 8:30 a.m. only to be told the offices open at 9 a.m. I couldn’t stand around for another 30 minutes considering I’d left work. Can you spell F.R.U.S.T.R.A.T.I.O.N

A dasher. No, this is not Emily.

A dasher. No, this is not Emily.

Enter dash2do.com. You sign up, you load your account with some money from your debit/credit card, and then you can request for errand doers – stating the errand the amount you are willing to offer. Someone is assigned to the errand, and give you a call. You also get a text telling you who has been assigned. That’s how Emily from dash2do.com contacted me and finally sorted out this lining up to pay business. I was so relieved. Now to wait for about two weeks to go pick the certificate. I also had many other errands which she ran satisfactorily for me.

Once a task is complete, you go back to the dash2do.com website and pay the agreed amount. They also offer other services like phone tracking, luggage keeping etc.

Old Mutual

I am trying to invest. I know, I also laugh at the joke that is that statement. This means if there’s anything left in my account at the end of the month, I try to siphon it off to these guys, they have this fund which you can top up with any amount from 1,000. You can top up via M-Pesa or through bank deposits (scan and send the slip after depositing). You can liquidate any time. Although you can’t check statements online on the website, they are sent to me via email. The fund manager is available via email for any discussions etc.

Free Old Mutual Calendar

Free Old Mutual Calendar

I got a free calendar when I signed 🙂 I keep it on my workspace.

P.S.

All these guys I’ve mentioned should pay me for marketing them 🙂 Tell me you’re not convinced

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This entry was posted in Technology, mobile, internet, Work. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Conveniences of the Online World

  1. pitzevans says:

    hehe ill think of investing with them too

    Like

  2. polarise says:

    Hmm… about investing with OM. A close friend of mine told me how he consistently lost money with them. His attempts to get his money back drove him nuts until he had to storm into the CEO’s office and demand some action. Generally, I’m a bit wary of mutual funds. Perhaps someone can prove me wrong but I think they are a poor investment vehicle. PK

    Like

    • savvykenya says:

      He consistently lost money? Anyway suppose you are investing in the short term.. because shares (securities) are really a long-term investment, what would you consider?

      Anyway after my short term is over, I will see if they will return my funds in 4 working days like they promised. I’ll be wary.

      Like

      • polarise says:

        In my opinion there’s no such thing as a short-term investment. It’s like trying to get something for nothing. I prefer to invest in skills and knowledge – books and good quality technology that will bring out the best in me. It might sound naive but the local alternatives are not appealing.

        Like

      • savvykenya says:

        Sure, you invest in skills and knowledge, but at what point do you convert them to money? Then how will you grow your money?

        But you are right, there is no such thing as short-term investment. It should always be considered in the long term. There are times though, when one needs a place to ‘park’ their money before deciding where to invest it, be it in education&skills, or financial plans.

        Like

      • polarise says:

        Oh… I have so much to say on this. Let’s just say that there’s a lot that’s taken as conventional wisdom that we stake out live on yet isn’t true.

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      • savvykenya says:

        I think this is a debate for another platform/post, it has outgrown this post 🙂

        Like

  3. Mackel9 says:

    In addition to Dash there is another one nitumeservices.com met the owner Simon and they do quite a good job 🙂

    Like

    • savvykenya says:

      Thanks for the recommendation! Dash2do seems to have closed shop, tried them sometime back and the site was not loading!

      Like

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