Business

Shopping app sees expansion due to lockdown

In the midst of the COVID-19 national lockdown, some businesses are embracing technology in an attempt to resuscitate their bottom lines.

Marketing consultant for the MobileAssist app Salina Archer said in the days following the implementation of a 24-hour curfew there has been an increase in downloads by residents seeking access to their preferred businesses from the comfort of home.

“Yes, we have about 200 new registered users on the app,” Archer told The Nassau Guardian.

“People are now seeing the benefit of using apps like MobileAssist to be able to shop and pay bills from their smart phone. Not only does it take away the hassle of using cash, it allows for a safer transaction from a security and COVID-19 perspective.

“In the past few days, we have gotten five referrals from existing businesses using the app, with queries coming in daily on how to sign up. Businesses are thrilled that they are able to meet the guidelines set forth by the government while being able to facilitate sales on a 24-hour basis.”

With more than 60,000 consumer downloads and more than 60 companies registered on the app, Archer said bill pay, scan and pay and mobile shops have made it easier for Bahamians to access their goods and services while enforcing isolation measures.

“Southside Neighborhood Pharmacy, for instance, uses MobileAssist Bill Pay to have persons pay remotely for their prescriptions for delivery,” she said.

“Green Parrot opted to use the mobile shop to facilitate restaurant orders for pick up and delivery. In one day the restaurant chain saw close to $1,000 in sales via MobileAssist.”

Archer said the COVID-19 pandemic and national lockdown measures being issued globally expose the need for Bahamian businesses to move toward expanded e-commerce.

“Following the global trend, New Providence is aligning with what is happening in economies worldwide as it relates to e-commerce,” she said.

“Sales are trending upward for mobile and online sales as people are restricted and shopping habits are evolving. For us here, we are now looking at moving away from brick and mortar models, especially after Dorian and COVID-19, to find ways of sustaining businesses come what may.”

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