Asad Ikram, Abu Bakr Erabie, and Hamza Wasim are the three brains behind leading toy selling cyber business of Pakistan Toyzone.pk. There rich experience and improvisation led them to think at a common point of establishing Toyzone.pk. The website has reaped prominence since its inception because of highly tech savvy team. The founders of Toyzone.pk shared their insight in an interview with Technology Times
Brief us about yourself, professional highlights and your interests?
We started off as a team of three, Asad Ikram and Abu Bakr Erabie as web developers and Hamza Wasim as a business graduate. We come from a background of importers and whole sellers of toys so we decided to amalgamate our knowledge and experience together and form a web based toy shop.
What is your inspiration, how did you get idea to launch an e-commerce site pertaining to niche market of kid toys?
Well, we do not consider toys to be a niche market as we cater to everybody including parents. The overwhelming desire of the team ToyZone to bring something creatively innovative for the children and teens out there inspired us to our cores and proved to be a success.
What are the operational prerequisites to run an e-commerce site?
To start up any business, it is imperative to consider few things likewise to start an e-commerce site it is an exigent demand to first of all explain your customers what you are actually selling through a proper web display including unambiguous product details.
Mostly customers are attracted to the visuals when buying online but tend to lose interest if the product hasnt been explained properly. So, our goal should also be to make aware of the products that were offering to our clients.
Secondly, the items on display should always be available and not out of stock so one has to keep a good stock at the backend. Thirdly and most importantly, the items that are delivered should be the same as they are displayed on the web. If the clients shopping experience isn’t what he/she expected we might lose them for future.
We see many of trading sites claim big but when it comes to quality only few meet the commitments. Do you think the scenario is hurting the web space of Pakistan and it is difficult to filter out serious contenders?
Of course, it sure is hurting the web space of Pakistan. A few contaminate the whole pond but for ToyZone customers come first at all cost! They are valuable to us. Like we mentioned earlier, it is vital to secure clients for future and that is only done if they receive an excellent online shopping experience.
Usually kids do tend to choice their toy by themselves physically seeing and touching it. Dont you think in your case the scenario is difficult as kids are not able to go through the site and opt by themselves?
As we mentioned earlier, we cater to everybody including kids of all age, parents and teens too but if we specifically talk about kids who cannot choose their own toy we have based our toys purely on different famous cartoon characters so when the parents select toys for their kids they know what kind of cartoons they like. It makes selection earlier.
What are the products that your site offers that are not available in conventional markets?
By the grace of Allah SWT were very glad to tell you that we are the first and only toy company including QuadCopters, remote control and camera helicopters. We stand in the number one position in dealing with the remote operated toys in Pakistan.
What are the variables that govern the dynamics of successful cyber business, in your experience?
There are three things that we consider vital to a successful cyber business in our point of you. The first thing is customer service, secondly customer service and thirdly customer service! We are here for the ease of our customers so that they may select and buy in the comforts of their homes. We provide them with a delightful and satisfying online shopping experience. We stay in touch with our clients even after they have made the purchase providing after sales service.
What is checklist for young cyber entrepreneurs before practically stepping into online business? What is the necessary homework to be done?
First and foremost it is important to have a clearer motive and diligence to work. Product knowledge to the core level is needed along with a vision to create products that embark on the principles of differentiation so that it strikes you with a sharp competitive edge.
Is technology knowledge mandatory for cyber entrepreneur or any other professional and layman can do that?
We do not believe that a layman could handle such an intricate business. It is important to be aware of your market; one should know how to market their products to the targeted market. Marketing professionals are mandatory to analyze the complexities and demands of the clientele which varies from time to time. We as professionals should also keep ourselves updated with the latest technology, software and trends.
Cyber Security is also a big concern in Pakistan, especially frauds, malpractices cases are in excess due to lack of awareness? Is it also hurts your business activity as people are cautious making payments and always have “fraud” thing in their mind?
Yes, to deal with such situations we offer our valuable clients with the cash on delivery services. Not only do we give cash on delivery services, we also promise a complete refund of the amount if they are not happy with the product. This actually helps us gain our customer trust and loyalty.
How much impact e-commerce is imparting on conventional business? Is it hurting the vendors sitting in market to much extent? What do you assess?
Well, we do not think that the impact is pretty huge. There are two types of shoppers; online shoppers and conventional shoppers. The market is different for both so there isn’t much of an impact on either of them. The conventional buyers will buy from conventional shops likewise an online buyer who prefers to order from the vicinity of his home and is busy to visit a physical shop will buy from an online store.
The key is to differentiate your product. If you offer something that is different than obviously even conventional buys will give it a go as the product is not available elsewhere.
What measures must be taken to promote cyber entrepreneurship culture in Pakistan and where we are lacking?
To promote cyber entrepreneurship culture in Pakistan the first thing needed is cyber security and awareness. The amount of fraud done on the internet should be lessened at any cost. Building customers trust and not only meeting but exceeding their expectation is very important in conducting any cyber business.
What is the formulation of financial assets that one must have before setting up an online startup?
There isnt any major formulation for big investments when it comes to startup any online business. Practically, an idea is enough to carry the online business ahead. But an idea itself wont take you anywhere if it isnt implemented with the right strategies. Similarly, the right strategies wont help if they arent implemented at the right time. Therefore, effectiveness and efficiency of the actions and counter actions is important.
What are your comments on Technology Times?
Your efforts, we must say, are commendable. Pakistan is a developing country and we really need people like you so that the masses come to know what actually people from Pakistan are doing! How they are investing their efforts, time and money to uplift the social and economic paradigm.
What is your message for rising entrepreneurs?
Our suggestions would be to stay committed to your work, success is not an overnight story; it takes time, precision and efforts to reach a certain goal. Do not forget the work ethics when you pursue the business. Lastly, look out for a vision that is futuristic and try to bring about a positive change in the society through your business.