In conversation with Osama Qassim, CEO, Quick & Easy ( QnE )
Osama Qassim tells the story of QnE journey
- Tell us something about QnE and what role QnE has played in grocery industry of Pakistan?
Ans. QnE is an ecommerce portal where people can buy their grocery items through our website. Seeing the changing trend of food ordering we felt that there is a need for convenience hence decided to simplify the lives of people by offering them a quick and easy solution for grocery. Starting from just two orders a day, we are now closing at around 120 orders in a day alhamdulillah. It has been a great journey but this is just the beginning. Our vision is clear, we aim to expand the online community by becoming the nation’s favorite ecommerce portal.
- Buying grocery online is a very innovative concept in Pakistan. People still like to do their groceries shopping in supermarkets, so how do you tackle this mindset of the people?
Ans. There will always be those people who would prefer to go to supermarkets to buy groceries. Our target market is not those, rather we are targeting the convenience lovers. People still go out to eat at restaurants, but there are so many who order in as well. The grocery retail industry is huge and consumer goods industry is growing at a rapid pace. People have started to notice us and the acceptance of such solutions has begun. Developing a new channel is not an easy task, but we have partnered with big names such as Mondelez, Reckitt, Unilever who offer amazing consumer promotions through this channel to promote and help us build this innovative concept into reality
- What is the response from the people up till now; and how do you take feedback especially criticism on quality of services?
Ans. Response has been great alhamdulilllah. People actually needed such kind of an initiative in the market where they can receive their desired grocery items at doorstep. People are ordering from different areas of Karachi like North Nazimabad, Defence, Johar and other places, not only this they are also giving us their feedback regarding addition of new brands which they use.
We take our customers very seriously, their complains, the issues they encounter while ordering are resolved in a very friendly way. We make sure all the customers` issues are solved on priority basis. We have 3 days return policy,if any customer is not satisfied with the delivered product, the customer can call the customer support department and return the product within three days of purchase. Not only this we make sure that the products stored in our warehouse are fresh especially the frozen products are preserved on its required temperature.
- What are the current common risks for E-commerce and how do you mitigate them?
Like every business there are risk factors for ecommerce as well. Since its primarily cash on delivery, the cash carrying risk is there. Another risk is of cyber security which is a global issue. Another challenge for ecommerce is that there are no guidelines in the tax act for ecommerce business. The costs of acquiring customer is quite high due to the low trust factory of people in this segment. However, with these challenges there is an immense opportunity as there are less overheads compared to bricks & mortar. We are open 24 hours whereas very bricks & mortar service customer throughout the day and night. Globally, if we look at this business model it is at an upward trend. Amazon is investing in grocery. Walmart is investing in ecommerce. These examples give us the confidence to continue building this channel. The opportunities enable us to look at risks in a positive way.
- What makes you different from other this kind of E-commerce initiatives?
QnE is a customer oriented eCommerce platform. We have a very energetic and active customer support department which stays online 24/7. Not only this, we have a WhatsApp service also, where our customers can order their groceries through a message. This is also one of the innovative concepts we introduced for our customers. We also run a text message reminder campaign for our customers. Through this we send a reminder messages to our customer who have not ordered their most ordered grocery items after 20-25 days. Through these messages, the customer gets a reminder that their grocery has been consumed and needs to be ordered again.
Our top management team also deliversgrocery to our customers` doorstep once in a month. This activity helps our management to experience customers` feedback and act accordingly.Moreover, the customers get the chance to meet the people who are trying to change the game and create a segment in the industry which did not exist earlier. The feedback is valuable to our team and has helped us grow the business multi dimensionally.
- What is Express Service by QnE?
Ans. Express Service is an additional offering we have introduced for our customers recently. Through express delivery our customers can receive their order within 2 hours with the charges of Rs.99 only. The need behind introducing express delivery came from our customers` feedback,as some of our customers wanted to get their ordered grocery on the urgent basis so we decided to introduced this service for our customers` satisfaction and efficiency.
- What are QnE next 5 years plans; especially in terms of network expansion?
Ans. QnE is planning to launch its official app by the end of December on Android and IOS both. This will help us to make our customers` live more quick and easy. We are currently receiving 100+ orders per day and but we feel Karachi’s has higher potential. We are further planning to head into other metropolitan cities of Pakistan like Lahore and Islamabad before Ramadan next year, to give people more time to pray and less time fussing about groceries. Operationally Hyderabad is also our target due to its proximity with Karachi and are also thinking about heading towards Hyderabad leveraging our current infrastructure in near future