The Cairo Guide to Online Shopping: Offerna, Cobone, GoNabIt, Souq & Nefsak
There’s nothing better for a lazy Cairenes than online shopping: you search for the product, read the reviews, pay online or on delivery, and your purchase is delivered directly to your door. Online shopping is considered a new yet rapidly growing market in Egypt, and not too many websites are available for shoppers, but the ones available so far indicate that it will be a very popular market in the very near future.
This feature focuses on two different sites: the first type of site is a group buying site where you can buy a special deal or discount on a product or service; for example, a 50% discount on a meal at your favourite restaurant. The other type of site is an online purchase site, where you can find all kinds of products for sale, as well as second-hand products sold by other consumers via the site.
Group Buying Websites: Offerna, Cobone and GoNabIt all use the oldest, easiest and most effective method to sell something: word of mouth! The idea itself is quite simple; product and service providers present limited-time offers with huge discounts in return for a certain minimum amount of guaranteed buyers. So the deal is announced through their websites, then people start buying the deal and recommend it to their friends. Once the minimum number of buyers is reached, the deal becomes active, and buyers get an e-voucher with which they can purchase their deal at the shop or restaurant. If the minimum number of buyers is not reached, the deal is cancelled and payment is refunded.
How to use Offerna, Cobone & GoNabIt: all you have to do is to register on their websites and you’ll receive daily e-mail updates on new offers. If you like the offer, you can either buy it online through Visa, Master Card, and online payment options, or you can choose cash on delivery where you will get a call within one business day to schedule a date and time for the cash to be collected. You will receive your e-voucher details within two business days after placing your order.
The sites also have very active Facebook and Twitter pages that you can use to follow their offers.
User-Friendliness of the Site: All three sites are very easy to use and navigate, displaying the highlights and conditions of the deal very well, but Cobone.com has the advantage of enabling user comments underneath every deal, which can help other users assess the deal and make a decision based on the feedback.
Sweet Deals: Available offers include a special dinner for two and an enchanting private yacht Nile cruise from Nile Lily floating restaurants, a 200LE e-voucher for items worth up to 400LE at Kipling or 70% off at Itsumi Sushi Bar, and a full day at Pro Center Health Club for 80LE instead of 200LE.
Online Purchasing Sites: Souq and Nefsak focus more on selling new and second-hand products rather than on special offers. Offering items on sale directly from the dealers or from individual customers, the sites sell electronics, clothing and accessories as well as beauty products, books and games. You can often find great deals on barely used electronics such as iPads, Blackberry phones and SLR cameras.
How It Works: Souq and Nefsak are considered a channel where thousands of buyers and sellers sell products over a trusted platform, offering competitive prices to buyers, who can then rate and comment on the products, providing user feedback for other potential buyers.
How to Use Souq & Nefsak: All you have to do is register on their websites and start searching for whatever you need. After you’ve read the reviews and comments, and made your purchase, you can either pay online or cash on delivery. You can also subscribe to their newsletters for updates and special offers. Souq provides excellent delivery service, with your product arriving punctually at your specified time and date within two to three days of purchasing.
User-Friendliness of the Site: Both websites are very similar but we have to say that Souq’s website is much more user-friendly. The site also offers a three-day return policy with 100% of your fee returned if you don’t like your product. However, the catch is that you don’t actually get your money back in cash; it’s credited to your account on Souq.com to use again in the future.
These sites are a very smart, useful and convenient way to get massive discounts on high-quality products and services in Egypt, and with such sites available, shopping online just got a lot easier!