SA retailers see rise in credit sales as consumers suffer

South African shoppers are increasingly turning to credit to buy discretionary items such as clothing and homewares, company earnings reports show, highlighting the strains on household budgets and growing risks for retailers.

Africa’s most advanced economy is grappling with high inflation, rapidly rising interest rates, low wages growth and rolling electricity blackouts, with around a third of the workforce unemployed.

The pressure on consumers is becoming increasingly evident in retailers’ results.

“There’s no doubt that credit has been fueling the system for at least the last 12 months,” Mark Blair, CEO of clothing retailer Mr Price, told investors on Thursday.

The company, which caters primarily to low-to-middle income customers, saw an 8.3% rise in sales on credit in the year ended April 1, it said.

Credit applications jumped 30.9% year-on-year, while its net bad debt ratio rose to 8.4% from 6.0% a year earlier, it added.

While South African inflation retreated to a 13-month low on Wednesday, it averaged 6.9% in the year ended 31 March, up from 4.5% a year earlier.

To tame it, the South African Reserve Bank has raised interest rates by a total of 475 basis points since it began the policy tightening cycle in November 2021, making it more costly for consumers and companies to service debt.

Retailers have also been hit by rolling power blackouts, sometimes up to 10 hours a day, which have reduced trading hours and added the cost of running diesel generators.

TFG, which usually targets high-end customers, saw its sales on credit increase by 11% in the year ended 31 March, it said earlier this month, adding its bad debts for the period increased by more than a third.

Lewis Group, a retailer primarily relying on credit sales, said its bad debts rose to R919m ($50m)in the year ended 31 March from R902m a year earlier.

($1 = R18.4893)

Wrapping Up:

We at ShopShipShake have been working with businesses like yours with fulfilling experiences. We offer one-stop services, including an efficient supply chain, over 10 thousand of China’s suppliers, over 1,000,000 SKU and more. With a successful track record of over 100,000 clients, we are sure to deliver your orders requirements.

Let’s get in touch to build, sustain, and grow your businesses! If you would like to know more details about us, please contact us: If you are interested in cooperating with us. Please register on:

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What is Social Selling

Social selling uses trust built through personal connections to sell products or services. The industry has pivoted to the digital realm, and most social selling now relies on social media platforms to create that trusting, organic connection with potential customers.

Effective social sales means engaging in actual conversations with potential customers and business partners, either in person or via the web. As you build trust and establish relationships, you can eventually move the customer through the sales funnel toward lead generation and a successful deal.Click here to start selling online now with Shopify

What is social selling?

Social selling is a sales process that uses social media platforms to build relationships with potential customers, with the eventual goal of selling products or services to them. It relies on platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to engage with prospects, provide them with valuable content, and establish trust and credibility. This is different compared to traditional advertising that focuses on pushing products to customers by highlighting their benefits or how they solve a problem.

Social selling builds relationships and provides value to potential customers before asking them to buy. Social sellers who invest in this relationship-building process increase their chances of converting prospects into customers and ultimately driving more sales.

Benefits of social selling

Social selling offers key benefits to sellers promoting a professional brand or their own personal brand.

It builds trust

Trust forms the basis of dealmaking and the sales process—people want to do deals with someone they trust. Communicating with your customers and building a personal relationship with them establishes a baseline of trust so they feel comfortable with you and, by extension, with buying your product or service.

For example, when selling with social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram, you can build a community around you and your company that gives people a sense of belonging (however big or small).

It yields long-term rewards

Social selling doesn’t aim for impulse purchases. It steadily and progressively builds relationships with potential clients, and it maintains those relationships after they become paying customers.

For instance, the online audio retailer Sweetwater assigns each customer to a “sales engineer” who periodically sends emails to check in, and who always follows up a purchase with a direct note of thanks. This has led to substantial repeat business for the company.

It gives you insights into your customer base

When a company commits to social listening and robust dialogue with customers, it learns a lot about what motivates those customers. In this regard, social selling is not only a sales technique but also a market research technique. Even if a social interaction does not yield a sale, it can still provide the company with valuable information about customer wishes and interests. Companies can use this information to shape future marketing campaigns, develop new product designs, and refine product descriptions.

How to choose the right social selling platform for your brand

Social selling largely takes place via online social network platforms. And choosing the social media selling platforms for you comes down to an honest self-assessment of your brand.

Facebook and Twitter are big for salespeople, given their emphasis on discussion. Instagram and TikTok reach younger audiences, while LinkedIn is great for networking in the professional world. Reddit and YouTube comment threads often draw enthusiasts with deep knowledge of a topic, or those looking to learn.

Some of the main social selling platforms to consider include:

1 LinkedIn for business-to-business (B2B) interactions

LinkedIn is a B2B platform, where people refine their personal brands to pitch themselves as employees or business partners. It features a proprietary tool called the LinkedIn Sales Navigator that helps you target business customers. It also gives you a Social Selling Index, LinkedIn’s proprietary profiling tool. It’s a great platform for social selling to a business audience, ideal for promoting your business services, digital products for professionals, and other relevant offerings.

2 Instagram and its dedicated user base

There are many ways to sell on Instagram, as well as use the channel to connect with customers and build relationships. It’s visually driven, so you’ll need to be prepared to post photo and video content to your feed and Stories. Overall, it’s an excellent platform for social selling because it has a massive base of engaged users. In fact, more than 500 million Instagram users browse the app on a daily basis, making it home to one of the most engaged audiences around. Plus, you can open an Instagram Shop to make sales directly within the app.

3 TikTok to reach a younger audience

TikTok’s unique algorithm offers social sellers the opportunity to go viral, quickly. It’s not just videos and memes that go viral on TikTok—products go viral too, and often sell out in a matter of days. While TikTok’s own ecommerce strategy isn’t as advanced as other social media platforms, like Instagram, it’s quickly becoming more refined, including through a prominent partnership with Shopify. Companies can tap into a younger market by using TikTok to track and engage with viral trends, and leverage that to make viral content of their own.

4 Facebook to promote both discussion and sales 

Facebook is a great channel for selling products on social media. Nearly three-quarters of Facebook users browse the social media site to discover new brands and products. The company has tapped into this trend with Facebook Shops, its own native ecommerce platform, making Facebook a one-stop shop for learning about and acquiring a product.

Facebook is also known for lengthy discussions in its comment threads, including those by product enthusiasts sharing their experiences on a brand’s official Facebook page. Lengthy, substantive discussions naturally foster social engagement and are a key facet of social selling.

5 Twitter and customer service

Twitter is an influential discussion forum, especially for customer service. Many social sellers use Twitter marketing to monitor mentions, respond to customer service queries, and take extra care to take action on negative feedback.

Twitter hasn’t invested in ecommerce to the same degree as Meta (owner of Facebook and Instagram), so brands use it more for product discussions and fielding feedback. Plus, its future is uncertain after Elon Musk acquired the platform.

6 YouTube to inform and connect through video

YouTube offers many options to make money, social selling being one of them. While you can’t sell on YouTube directly, it’s an important promotional channel and outlet to connect with shoppers. Many major brands create a YouTube channel where they showcase products and provide useful content to interest their customer base. Successfully marketing on YouTube requires effective videos, authentic engagement with your audience, and general-purpose information. Over time, the sales will come organically.

8 tips for social selling success

As you embark upon your own social selling campaign, remember what distinguishes social selling from traditional advertising—it’s that trusting connection. Here are some ​​social selling best practices and tips to keep in mind:

1. Create a professional brand

If you want potential shoppers to not only trust but also respect your business, it’s time to get professional. This includes making your venture “official”—by way of business registration, incorporation, and even building out a digital presence. Research any required business licenses or relevant industry certifications.

Once you’ve got the paperwork filed, build and maintain a website that’s cohesive with the rest of your online presence and brand. And always remember to provide prompt, respectful communication to your customers.

2. Check your social selling index

LinkedIn pioneered a tool called the Social Selling Index, or SSI, which measures social selling success and relationship building based on four broad criteria. Using that tool and this guide you can check your social selling index score. Whether you use its tool or not, these guidelines can help you create a unique and successful social selling campaign. 

3. Focus on the right prospects

A key advantage of social selling is that you connect with customers who genuinely care about your product (if you’re promoting a professional brand) or your core competencies (if you’re promoting a personal brand). The most self-aware and efficient social sellers hone in on the people who seem truly engaged, and they don’t bother with uninterested people who are unlikely to turn into paying customers.

With a tool like Shopify Audiences, you can ensure you’re putting your ads in front of the right buyers. Shopify’s unique insights from commerce data help you create custom audience lists to make better targeting decisions.

4. Build trusting relationships

In case you haven’t picked up on the theme here, trust is the cornerstone to successful social selling. It’s important to engage in genuine conversations and listen to potential customers about their needs and current pain points, using those interactions to foster authentic relationships.

Aside from showing up authentically in all your interactions, you can try the following to help build and strengthen your customer relationships:

  • Set up a customer relationship management (CRM) platform to help track customers, build segments, and offer personalized communication.
  • Use cohort analytics in your Shopify dashboard to check in on customers.
  • Focus on customer retention strategies to drive repeat purchases and even word-of-mouth marketing.
  • Prioritize shoppers with a high customer lifetime value (CLV).
  • Launch a customer loyalty program to reward shoppers for their purchases.

5. Use built-in tools to target potential buyers

Many online platforms offer social selling tools that steer companies toward their presumed customer base. These tools involve lead generation and a statistical breakdown of who is visiting your pages. LinkedIn reports that social selling tools can make a big impact on company-customer connections—62% of B2B buyers responded favorably to salespeople who knew something about them, including business model, objectives, and pain points.

6. Leverage third-party tools to expand your online presence

Social selling tools are not limited to the native functions of a platform. Other companies, including Salesforce, Hootsuite, and Amplify, have tools that let businesses easily communicate with customers on a variety of platforms. These tools are particularly useful for communicating with a unified message so a recipient gets the same experience whether via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or email.

7. Listen first, sell later

Whether you’re promoting a professional brand or your own personal brand, it helps to begin your interactions with social listening. This means paying attention to online conversations to hear what people are saying about your product, noting customer pain points or things they love about your company, and building your messaging around that. You can engage in these conversations and answer people’s questions, but don’t launch into salesperson mode. The goal is to have authentic discussions, not to put on a hard sell.

There are many ways and places to listen to your customers. Here are some ideas:

  • Take note of impressionable in-person interactions, and train your associates to do the same.
  • Send customer surveys via email to solicit feedback.
  • Ask for customer testimonials and share insights with your team.
  • Collect, monitor, and track customer reviews.

8. Use analytics

Most social networks provide robust analytical insight. You can use these insights to identify the types of people who engage with your profiles, which content they like, and which posts and ads they’re clicking on. Top social sellers use these insights to inform and refine their messaging and outreach.

Get started with social selling today

Social selling is an excellent way to build relationships, promote your brand, and drive sales. However, it’s important to be strategic and professional in your approach. Engage with customers, listen to them, and make a plan to reap sufficient rewards as time passes.

4 Ways SMEs Can Deal With the Energy Crisis While They Await Relief

South Africa’s escalating energy crisis shows no signs of abating with the implementation of Stage 6 load shedding plummeting many parts of the country into darkness last week.


As the backbone of the country’s economy, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) have been worst affected by load shedding. Many are just recovering from the pandemic and are now being faced with the devastating effects of having no power for between eight and twelve hours a day.

The government has just announced it is stepping in to take the pressure off SMEs and has instructed the Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda) and the Small Enterprise Finance Agency (Sefa) to collaborate with various stakeholders and find a solution via an energy relief package. While these talks are ongoing, Eskom announced the devastating news that South Africa will be placed on permanent Stage 2 or 3 load shedding for the next two years.

In response to Eskom’s latest announcement, small businesses have appealed to the government to consider implementing subsidies on diesel, diesel-powered generators or other alternative energy solutions to help them cope with load-shedding, as many will not be able to survive another two years of constant power cuts.

“The details of the Seda and Sefa-driven packages and how SMEs can claim are not yet available, but relief efforts like this are vital if our SMEs are going to survive the indefinite energy crisis,” says Miguel Da Silva, managing director at Retail Capital.

“We applaud the government for stepping in and hope that the relief package will go some way towards creating alternative sources of energy, recovering some losses, and subsidising existing energy solutions. In the meantime, we encourage SMEs to act now and invest in alternatives if they have the finances available,” he adds.

There are a number of things that small business owners can do to help mitigate the effects of these power outages – the key is to act fast.

Da Silva suggests four ways every SME can and should be dealing with the energy crisis today:

1. Find affordable alternatives

Not all alternative energy solutions are expensive, so do your research and find out which solutions will best suit your business. A small generator or an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) for example can cost as little as R900 and can be purchased from high street hardware stores or online.

“They’re not a 24-hour solution but, at the very least, these will provide you with an interim source of power until the lights come back on,” says Da Silva.

Uninterruptible power supply (UPS)

Battery packs and power banks are also cost-effective options that will help keep your electrical items, Wi-Fi and Pos devices running. “Using battery and power banks can be a juggling act though and you need to remember to keep these charged when the power is back on,” says Da Silva.

Investigating gas cooking solutions is another effective way of maintaining business as usual – or as close to it – for restaurants and other hospitality businesses. “Gas alternatives do require professional installation so make sure you factor in the cost of having it installed by a gas safety engineer who can provide you with the right safety certificates,” advises Da Silva.

2. Get funding to go off-grid

For most SMEs and individuals, ordinary savings won’t even cover the costs of getting off the Eskom grid. If your business premises are mortgaged with certain banks, then you may be able to take further financing from the bank to pay for these alternative energy solutions.

Several banks have partnered with renewable/backup energy providers to provide discounts to their customers. Some may also offer improvement loans for business premises, and this could go some way towards financing an alternative source of energy, like solar.

3. Change the way you work

If an off-grid solution is not financially viable for your SME, then consider investing in a hot desk at a shared office space that’s equipped with a generator.

“The costs can be quite high depending on your location and amount of people working for you, but this could be a worthwhile cost to bear if it means your business won’t be interrupted by outages and ensuring you are still profitable. Smaller teams are also more flexible so consider working schedules that can adapt around load shedding hours,” says Da Silva.f

4. Manage any price fluctuations

“If you are considering the expensive off-grid option, you may need to make realistic price hikes on your goods and services so that you keep yourself in business. However, it is wise to manage any price fluctuations carefully and to be completely transparent with your clients from the get-go. Building in added value for your clients can go a long way towards offsetting any resistance to this,” he advises.

Wrapping up

We at ShopShipShake have been working with businesses like yours with fulfilling experiences. We offer one-stop services, including an efficient supply chain, over 10 thousand of China’s suppliers, over 1,000,000 SKU and more. With a successful track record of over 100,000 clients, we are sure to deliver your orders requirements.

Let’s get in touch to build, sustain, and grow your businesses! If you would like to know more details about us, please contact us: If you are interested in cooperating with us. Please register on:

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10 Content Marketing Pitfalls To Avoid In 2023

You’ve made your list, but now it’s time to check it twice. No, not THAT list. At the vert start of 2023, it’s time to double-check your 2023 content marketing list. Whatever your strategy, we’ve put together this list of common content marketing mistakes to help you ensure your content marketing strategy stays off of the naughty list.

Top 9 Content Marketing Mistakes You Should Avoid

#1: Not Investing In Content Marketing

A simple, but costly mistake, if you’re 2023 marketing strategy and accompanying budget doesn’t include any content marketing, time to rethink your plan. Content marketing is far more than just a simple blog and the occasional piece of gated content. It’s any piece of consumable media (blogs, videos, podcasts) your company publishes. 

Content, regardless of its form, is how your brand can engage with your consumer base. Each piece of content you deliver is another opportunity for your brand to share its story and how it can better improve the lives of your customers. 

#2: Not Sticking To A Strategy

If you’re going to invest in content marketing, be sure those content marketing pieces are built around a centralized strategy. A good plan not only dictates what type of content you publish and how often you publish it, but it also identifies how your content will benefit your audience. 

If you’re creating content around a central topic, but have no idea why it’s time to revisit your content marketing strategy and ensure it’s aligned with the needs of your customer base. 

#3: No Content Marketing Goals

As a note, this should be part of your strategy, but brands often overlook it. It can be a bit tricky, but you need to create goals around your content marketing program. How else are you going to be able to measure the effectiveness of your content marketing efforts? 

At a minimum, your goals should: 

Be Attainable: No, it’s not reasonable to expect a 10,000x ROI from content marketing

Be Quantifiable: Get some metrics and KPIs in the mix

Be Aligned: Your content marketing goals should ladder up to your general marketing and revenue goals; otherwise, why invest? 

#4: Not Sticking To A Regular Schedule Over The Long Term

Raise your hand if you have a colleague or boss that soured on content marketing once the first (and only) blog post you publish didn’t produce a paying customer. Does this sound familiar, “I guess content marketing doesn’t work for us!” 

Too many brands make the common mistake of giving up on their content marketing after publishing a few sporadic content pieces. Don’t be those marketers. 

Proven content marketing success comes: 

  1. When you stick to your strategy (as long as it’s a good strategy) over the long term.
  2. When you publish your content pieces on a regular schedule. 

That schedule could even be monthly; the point is to be consistent.

#5: Not Creating Great Content Your Audience Finds Valuable 

There is a gluttony of “good” content in the market. The world doesn’t need any more. If you want your content marketing efforts to be successful, you need to move away from good content.

Instead, strive to produce great content that your audience finds valuable. Teach them something, provide them with insight, answer questions, leave the content world more enriched with every piece of content your produce. 

#6: Focusing Too Much On Selling. 

Speaking of producing great content, leave the hard sales schtick out of most of your content pieces. Your customers are smarter than you give them credit for, and they can pick up when a post goes from “Hey, this is super useful.” to “Oh, here’s where they start selling to me.”

The second that happens, they’ve tuned out of your content and are moving on to the next part of their day. 

The one exception, it’s okay to produce sales-oriented content if it’s geared towards individuals that are actively going through your sales funnel. 

Which brings us to mistake #7… 

#7: Only Creating Top-Funnel Content 

Most content marketing is written to promote brand awareness. Get a keyword. Write a piece of content for that keyword. Have Google rank your site for that keyword. Get discovered. Get a customer.  Repeat. 

Yes, content is a vital part of driving awareness and filling that top-level of the funnel. But it’s not the ONLY part of the funnel that content marketing can affect. 

From consideration to decision-making to retention and loyalty building (and even reselling), your brand should be producing content that aligns with each stage of your customer’s journey. 

Again, the key is to provide value. Different topics are more helpful to a customer, depending on where they are within their journey with your brand. 

#8: Creating Content That Doesn’t Account For Your Audience’s Preferences

Content marketing is more than just blog posts. We know blogging is (dare we say) easier, it’s a writer and a bit of graphic support. Maybe a researcher and a copy editor if you’ve got the resources. But, brands need to understand, not every audience WANTS to read a blog post. 

Some prefer more design, others video, still others audio. Audiences have preferences, and if your content marketing plan doesn’t account for the known preferences of your target audience, you’re content marketing efforts will never reach their full potential. 

#9: Not Having A Content Amplification Strategy

By far, one of the biggest mistakes we see made by marketers regards their amplification strategy (or lack thereof). Brands collectively spend a small fortune on producing content but many  don’t reserve any resources to help share and distribute that content so it can be seen by an audience. 

The thought: that SEO and “free traffic” will bring the eyeballs.  When the traffic fails to materialize, they throw up their hands and say, “Content marketing doesn’t work!”

You need to have channels in place to amplify your content. 

The most common include: 

Paid Social Advertising: Publish your content to a social profile and pay to promote it.

Paid Native Advertising: Use a content advertising platform like Outbrain to increase awareness of your content. 

Email: Send new content to your subscriber base. 

Organic Social: Publish your content organically to your social profile

Fan Advocacy: Leverage the social-sharing power of your biggest fans to amplify your content by sharing your best pieces of content onto their personal social feeds (Curious about fan advocacy, see it in action here.)

The strongest amplification strategy uses a mix of all of the above to ensure every piece of content is getting the attention and awareness it needs to be successful.

#10: Not Diversifying Your Content

If you’re only producing one type of content (e.g., blog posts), you’re missing out on the opportunity to reach a wider audience. Try diversifying your content mix to include things like:

  • infographics
  • ebooks
  • webinars
  • videos
  • blog posts
  • surveys
  • quizzes
  • podcasts

Remember, the individuals that make up your audiences all have their preferred content. By creating a mix of different content types, you can better ensure that your message reaches your audience on the platform that best works for them.

Wrapping up

We at ShopShipShake have been working with businesses like yours with fulfilling experiences. We offer one-stop services, including an efficient supply chain, over 10 thousand of China’s suppliers, over 1,000,000 SKU and more. With a successful track record of over 100,000 clients, we are sure to deliver your orders requirements.

Let’s get in touch to build, sustain, and grow your businesses! If you would like to know more details about us, please contact us: If you are interested in cooperating with us. Please register on:

This article partly refers to:

5 Ways You Can Promote Your Small Business Online (for Free!) 

As a small business, it can be tough to attract attention when there are other big players in your industry. Of course, you may lack the resources and funds to go all-in to promote your business as aggressively as they do, but still there are plenty of options out there on the internet for you to boost your marketing game without paying a cent. We believes that any business can thrive if a clear goal and good marketing strategy is put to action—and it doesn’t have to break your bank. 

To help your small business build brand awareness and a strong, dedicated following, here are five free marketing strategies that you can get started with today.

1. Strengthen your SEO

You may not want to pay for ads on Google. Don’t worry, neither do we. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to rank higher in search results, and SEO is the best way to do that. The higher you rank, the easier it will be for people to discover you. While there are numerous ways you can perform SEO online, today we’ll focus on two important SEO tactics to help you market your business more effectively.

Local SEO

An easy way to be more visible in local search results is to improve your local SEO strategy. You can do this by claiming and listing your business on platforms like Google My BusinessBing Places for business, and Apple Maps Connect. These are free tools that are intended to help organisations manage their online presence across their respective search engines and maps.

Now, if you wonder what’s the big deal in appearing in local search results, we’d like to highlight two key findings from a 2014 Google report here:

  • 4 out of 5 customers use search engines to find local information.
  • People are more likely to purchase after a local search than compared to those who conduct non-local searches.

You can’t take this information lightly when it comes from the organisation that controls 92% of the search engine market. If you have a physical storefront and want to increase your local sales, this is a great opportunity. When you register on these platforms and add your organisation’s details, potential customers can easily find your working hours, contact information, website, location, and more. By searching your service with the phrase ‘near me,’ your business will be more likely to show up in the results."image if a Google search result for 'yoga studio near me'"

Traditional SEO 

While local SEO targets a specific geographical area, traditional SEO is for any business looking to expand its digital reach and rank higher in organic search results. This is becoming more important as ecommerce picks up steam in multiple industries across the world. This type of SEO is all about optimising your website, product listings, and general content to improve their discoverability. Using effective title tags and meta descriptions, conducting keyword research, writing ALT text for images, and including a clickable phone number on your contact page are some examples of SEO best practices that can help boost your content marketing efforts.

2. Take advantage of social media

A big part of South Africans say that they will inspect a brand’s social media presence before doing any kind of business with them. That said, many small businesses disregard social media marketing, which has tremendous potential to grow their business. Social media is an instant connection to the world—a powerhouse of visually rich content that people are constantly engaging with and sharing. You can establish a social media presence without splurging on paid ads or hiring an influencer to market your business. We encourage you to create a free business profile on any platform your target audience uses and start posting relevant, useful content in your niche. When people find that your posts are actually helpful and engaging rather than just blatant advertising, you will receive organic followers who may eventually become customers.

3. Start email marketing

In terms of ROI, email marketing outperforms almost all other marketing techniques. From sending newsletters, seasonal offers, and promotions to providing customer support, email is a versatile tool that every small business should use. The best part is that it’s highly customisable and exceptionally affordable. You can target and deliver relevant emails that bring value to specific customers for a fraction of what other marketing channels cost.

4. Build a business blog

Business blogs are an effective tool to build brand authority and credibility. Though they may take longer to produce results than other marketing methods, they are undeniably an excellent investment for your business. When you share your expertise by writing optimised blogs specific to your industry, you give more reasons for search engines to display you on results pages. This also helps you build domain authority and generate traffic to your website by reaching a larger audience. Simply put, the higher your search engine rankings, the more people will find you, and the better the chances are that they will convert into customers. For example, let’s say you run a photography business. If people searching for a wedding photographer in Brisbane come across your blog post on ‘Top 10 photography spots in Brisbane,’ they might want to hire you if they were impressed with the photos you took and your deep understanding of the the field.

5. Join online forums and communities

Online forums are where people exchange ideas and interact with one another about a particular subject. Choose a suitable forum where you can meet prospective customers, participate in discussions, and actively contribute your tips and opinions on topics related to your business. However, be certain that you are adhering to the rules by promoting your company only in appropriate contexts. This is an excellent way to network with potential customers, build relationships, and introduce them to your services at the right time when they are needed. QuoraRedditLinkedInFacebook, and Flying Solo are some platforms where you can find dedicated groups or channels related to small businesses.

Final thoughts

One of the most credible ways to attract loyal customers is through word of mouth. When people start talking about your organisation in positive ways to their friends, awareness about your brand grows exponentially. These marketing strategies follow that humble principle but apply it to today’s digital world where people check their email, social media apps, and Google multiple times per day. Through the internet, there is so much you can do to market your business for free. Some of these methods will take time to yield results, but when they do, you can rest assured knowing that the leads they generate will be genuine prospects interested in making a purchase.

Wrapping Up

We at ShopShipShake have been working with businesses like yours with fulfilling experiences. We offer one-stop services, including an efficient supply chain, over 10 thousand of China’s suppliers, and more. With a successful track record of over 20,000 clients, we are sure to deliver your orders requirements. Let’s get in touch to build, sustain, and grow your businesses.

If you would like to know more details about us, please contact with us:

If you are interested in cooperating with us. Please register on:

Article Source:

Must Know:the Basics of How to Register a Small Business in South Africa

Regardless of whether you are a making profit or the size of your company, there are advantages to registering your business in South Africa. These include business name protection, tax incentives, financial assistance and business compliance.

We answer all your other frequently asked questions (FAQs) about registering a new business:

Where do I register my small business?

  1. You can register your company online on the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) website, or on the website, a platform created by the CIPC that offers company registration and related services.
  2. You can also register your company via a bank, including Nedbank and First National Bank.
  3. [UPDATE] Another way to register your business is to outsource the admin to businesses that have the expertise to offer company registration services and related services. Many of them provide packaged services that include company registration and related services such as SARS consulting, labour registrations, CIDB registration, and upgrades, tax returns/ compliance, or accounting services. Read more here

What is the CIPC and what does the law say?

The Companies and Intellectual Property Registration Office (CIPRO) was replaced by the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) in May 2011, together with the New Companies Act, the act changed the way business owners had to register their companies. The Act stipulates that no new close corporations (CC) can be registered, but those registered prior to 1 May could continue to operate as CCs.

All companies fall under specific categories with, each with specific requirements in terms of the documentation that is required. The Companies Act provides for two main categories of companies – non-profit and profit companies, with other types falling under these categories.

What types of companies can register with the CIPC?

You can choose to register your company as one of the following:

1. Non-profit companies: A company incorporated for public benefit or other object relating to one or more cultural or social activities, or communal or group interests.

2. Profit companies: A business/organisation whose primary goal is making money, this includes anything from retail stores to restaurants to insurance companies to real estate companies.

3. Personal liability companies: Company directors and past directors are jointly liable for any debts and liabilities arising during their periods in office. The company name ends with the word ‘incorporated’.

4. Public companies: A public company is one that has issued securities through an initial public offering (IPO) and is traded on at least one stock exchange. It has more than 50 shareholders and its shares are offered to the public.

5. Private companies: These are similar to what was previously known as close corporations. Some of the changes made to private companies include fewer disclosure and transparency requirements, no longer being limited to 50 shareholders, and with a board that must comprise at least one director. The name of a private company must end with the expression ‘Proprietary Limited’ or ‘(Pty) Ltd’.

How long does it take to register a company?

According to the Online PTY Registration, a name reservation takes between seven to 21 days. A company certificate can be registered within three to five days afterward, depending on whether you have submitted your documents on time, and the workload of the registrar’s office.

How many Directors are allowed in a company?

At least one director.

Can I register a company if I have been blacklisted?


Can foreigners register a company in South Africa?

Yes. In order to do this, you need to provide a valid passport copy or RSA ID document and have a residential address in South Africa.

Am I allowed to register a company without a company name?

Yes. According to the CIPC, in terms of the Companies Act, 2008, a company may be registered with or without a company name. A company that is registered without a reserved name will still get a registration number, this will automatically become the company’s name.

CIPC says the company can transact with a trading (business) name or may apply to add a reserved name at a later stage. In this case, the company will need to first reserve a name and then apply for a name change.

How does the name reservation work?

The process: According to the CIPC, if your initial name reservation application is not approved, you will need to apply for new names. During each application process you may apply for up to four names during each application process.
The cost: Each name reservation application costs R50. A company registration may vary between R125 and R475 (R125 for a private company, R475 for a non-profit company registered without members).

Should I register my new small business for tax?

For every new business established, you are required to register with your local SARS office to obtain an income tax reference number. Registration must be done within 60 days after starting operations by completing an IT77 form, available at your local SARS office or from the SARS website.

Small businesses with a turnover of up to R1 million per annum will now be able to pay certain taxes (turnover tax, VAT and employees’ tax) twice instead of once a year, making the process more efficient for qualifying small business owners.

Turnover tax is a simplified tax system to make it easier for micro businesses to comply with their tax obligations. Turnover tax is worked out by applying a tax rate to the taxable turnover of a micro business. Depending on other factors such as turnover, payroll amounts, whether you are involved in imports and exports etc. you could also be liable to register for other taxes, duties, levies and contributions such as VAT,  PAYE (Pay-as-you-earn) UIF contributions (unemployment insurance contributions).

Where can I apply for funding after registering my business?

According to the South African Government, you can apply for various types of funding which is available through the Industrial Development Corporation or the Department of Trade and Industry’s Government Investment Incentives. Besides government funding, you can also apply for funding from the private sector.

What support is available to me after I have registered my business?

The Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda) provides business development and support services for small enterprises. Seda will give you all the information you need to start a business, including how to write a business plan, and once you have a business, to grow it.

[UPDATE: 20 September 2021]

Other Services You Can Apply for on the CIPC  Portal

You can also apply for the following services on the portal: business bank accounts, tax registration, B-BBEE certificates, Compensation Fund and UIF registration, Company name changes, address changes, and Annual Returns (Turnover based). For the Annual Returns (Turnover based) you can pay from R100. The rest of the above services are free.

Here are 6 legal documents you may need to start your own business.

Should I register my company domain name as well?

In 2018, the .ZA Domain Name Authority (ZADNA), partnered with the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) to enable businesses to register their domain name and business name simultaneously. 

Domain name registration should be part of your trademark protection process. 

“It is highly critical for a business to secure its domain name as early as possible to prevent online brand identity theft. A domain name gives your business digital presence and accessibility moreover, it enables a business an online brand establishment,” said Angel Selebano, Communications and Awareness Coordinator at .ZA Domain Name Authority (ZADNA).

Wrapping up

We at ShopShipShake have been working with businesses like yours with fulfilling experiences. We offer one-stop services, including an efficient supply chain, over 10 thousand of China’s suppliers, and more. With a successful track record of over 20,000 clients, we are sure to deliver your orders requirements. Let’s get in touch to build, sustain, and grow your businesses.

If you would like to know more details about us, please contact with us:

If you are interested in cooperating with us. Please register on:

See Original Article:

5 trends influencing the retail landscape

Gears switched at the beginning of 2022 as we entered a new phase in a retail eco-system.

While the sector is still massaging aches and pains, and playing catch up with new consumer behavioural patterns, new ways of doing things, ‘adaptability’ and ‘having an evolving mindset’ have become the rallying cry.

What lies beyond in this ever-changing landscape as we look to the now and beyond – sees physical stores becoming critical touchpoints; how some pandemic shopping behaviours are here to stay; consumers turning to less traditional shopping platforms such as Instagram and TikTok while commerce companies are exploring the metaverse.

Spending more per trip

Together, in the opinion of – these new ways of doing things will offer consumers far more satisfying ways to shop, while providing opportunities for traders to convert shoppers into customers.

Globally, overwhelmed supply chains, supply-demand imbalances and commodity-driven cost pressures as Russia invaded Ukraine, pushed inflation up and put further pressure on businesses and consumers alike.

Despite this, according to a recent Shopify article, economists and the National Retail Federation in the US project US retail sales to rise between 6% and 8% this year.

Closer to home, NielsenIQ South Africa released its monthly State of the Retail Nation analysis which shows that total annual retail sales at South African retail outlets were R516bn which represents a 14.4% annual increase.

“South Africans are shopping at fewer retailers but spending more per trip, with the average value of their shopping basket increasing by R131 since April 2020,” said NielsenIQ SA, managing director, Ged Nooy.

Trends going forward

Mindful of the expected growth predictions and with price hikes and inflationary concerns – to stay competitive the retail trade will once again have to adapt, with the following trend considerations under the spotlight from now, into next year:

  1. Emerging technologies such as social commerce will offer the industry new ways to integrate shopping carts using Facebook, Instagram and TikTok. Partnering recommendations from influencers, friends, and family leads to increased sales.
  2. An increase in buy online, pick-up in-store services, QR codes that allow shoppers to connect instantly, mobile point-of-sale systems to allow sales anywhere inside a store and a range of contactless payment options – will have data winning the day
  3. Customer centricity will remain king going into 2023 – essential to allow for synchronicity between marketing, products, supply chain and e-commerce or brick and mortar to present products, services, and experiences customers desire and expect.
  4. By 2030, the top 18 cities in Africa could have a combined spending power of $1.3tn. Businesses at the coal face are already looking to invest in these markets to reap the potential they may have ten or even 20 years down the line. Unlocking this potential will require strong local partnerships and a deep understanding of local markets.
  5. Key digital marketing trends for the South African retail industry to be aware of include – prioritising the omnichannel customer experience that has not necessarily come to full fruition yet; monetising digital efforts by tracking the entire customer journey to understand how each individual channel is contributing to ecommerce conversions, and the growing utilisation of dark social channels where the user journey is encrypted such as Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp – where brands are for example investing in the creation of WhatsApp bots as an innovative way to reach these audiences.

Seizing new opportunities for innovative growth are undoubtedly part of every retail or commerce strategy and trends certainly bring a fresh perspective.

Wrapping up

We at ShopShipShake have been working with businesses like yours with fulfilling experiences. We offer one-stop services, including an efficient supply chain, over 10 thousand of China’s suppliers, and more. With a successful track record of over 20,000 clients, we are sure to deliver your orders requirements. Let’s get in touch to build, sustain, and grow your businesses.

If you would like to know more details about us, please contact with us:

If you are interested in cooperating with us. Please register on:

See the original article: