FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Want to find out more about opening your store, have a look at our FAQs and if you still need more answers get in touch

About us

At Nala Collective we believe in the power that African Designers, creators, producers and Artists have. We want to provide a platform which makes connecting with potential buyers easy and accessible. We strive to provide the shopper with a varied and unique array of items made and designed by producers from around Africa. 

 

Open your Store

Our creative market space is a home where you, the creator/designer/producer/artisans, can build your own brand identity and have your own shop in which to sell your beautiful items. Your customers will enjoy not only buying from you but a multitude of others. You might have an online store already but the benefit of our online market space is much like that of a mall. When someone is looking for a specific thing they will inevitably look into your window to see what you have for sale as well. Its easy to set up and manage, with loads of support and encouragement from the Nala Collective team.

How it works:

This is an online marketplace website, where you can create your own online shop. If you are a small business owner, designer of African Fashion or African Decor, artists or a hobbyist who just wants to earn a bit of extra income with your designs, art, crafts, handmade items from around the continent of Africa, this is the place for you. All you need to do is select the package for you and start your online business. 

 

What is an online marketplace? Is it different to an online store?

Think of the online marketplace as a mall. You go to your favourite shoe shop for a pair of beautiful heels and you come across a store selling scarves, which you were also in need of. This is the beauty of cross marketing which happened in the marketplace. Like minded stores all under one “roof”. The major benefit in this case is that you only have one transaction once you have found all the items you need. 

At Nala Collective you’re browsing an online marketplace, rather than an online store. Nala collective itself doesn’t sell products: rather we provide a platform for small businesses to sell their products online and manage their own online platform while taking advantage of cross traffic and cross marketing. .

Each store on Nala Collective is run by the business owners themselves, and they fulfill each order which comes through their store. You are supporting small South African and African businesses by buying directly from the makers. 

What you need to have in place before you set up your store:

Store Name: Pick a name which best describes your brand 

Logo: Make it eye catching and unique to your brand. Need help with this?   

Shop Banner Image: This can be an image of your collection or a phrase which provides insight into your brand and products. Need help with this?    

Products: What are you going to sell and how? 

  • What is the price of your item considering labour, materials, business running costs, etc?
  • Images (800px wide x 1200px high) Multiple angles and colours will help sell. Take your product pictures in a well lit space and make them look as appealing as possible.  

Shipping options:There are many great courier companies and parcel services around so find the one which best suits your business model. We highly recommend providing free shipping wherever you can. Maybe make it free if a customer spends a certain amount in your store eg. R500 gets them free shipping, or free in certain areas. 

Business hours: When are you available to be contacted. 

Address where people can collect items from you. (If you want them to)

Who stores, packages and mails my items?

There are three options

1 You package the item and send via your chosen shipping method.

2 You can also optionally allow your customers to collect their orders from you directly.

3 COMING SOON: You store your items with the Nala Collective team, we will package in our unique packaging with your Brand info included and send it off. More info to follow. 

What couriers and shipping methods can I use?

The method you like best. Our system supports using all shipping methods, and also has integration with many of South Africa’s major couriers. More information here

How do I get paid?

Nala Collective works with a wallet system in which you can select your preferred payout method. Send a request for the money or get paid out on your chosen date. 

Why is there a R10 Payout fee?

This charge is added for each time you’re paid out to offset the cost the bank charges us for doing a transfer to your account. You’ll only be charged it once per payout and you won’t be charged at all if you haven’t made any sales for that payout period. You can read more about our payout system over here.

Do I need to be within South Africa to open a store?

Yes. Currently only stores in South Africa are supported, we are working on being able to go world wide in the future. You yourself don’t have to be South African  we welcome all nationalities living in South Africa.

How many products can I sell in my Nala Collective store?

As many as you like. This is your store go wild.  

I already have my own online store. Why should I open a Nala Collective marketplace store?

There are many benefits, and your Nala Collective store can happily coexist with your online store. By selling on Nala Collective you get to benefit from our collective and individual marketing strategies, for more info. All vendors will also be featured on our Facebook page. In other words by joining us you have a dedicated marketing team working tirelessly to bring traffic to the Nala Collective online store. 

Is there a contract I have to sign?

No contracts, no obligations, you can cancel your store at any time if you wish to. However should you not complete your orders or should we receive more than 3 complaints about your product quality or service we reserve the right to remove your shop from the Nala Collective market place. 

How much does this cost?

There are two options to pick from and we will have more diverse packages coming in the future. Pick which one works for you here

I’ve got more questions.

Do you have further questions which we haven’t addressed. Please email us and ask away info@nalacollective.co.za.   

Shipping

A few notes to keep in mind:

  • We recommend using one of the many private courier companies as they are highly reliable and have great tracking methods to ensure your packages reach their destination.
  • Please account for the commission fee Nala Collective charges on shipping. Do this when setting your prices.More on Why am I being charged commission on my shipping fee?
  • It is important to remember that if you don’t ship with a tracking number you will be liable for the full amount charged to the customer if the package does not reach them. This applies to all shipping methods.
  • Nala collective wants to grow your brand and a vital part of that is offering it countrywide which is why when selecting your shipping options you should try offer shipping country wide (this obviously doesn’t apply to extremely fragile items which can only be collected ie Plants, freshly baked items, etc)

Pricing:

Online shopping has become a staple for many people and so the notion of paying for shipping is not foriegn to today’s shopper. But a few things to keep in mind:customers are often scared off when a shipping cost is more than that of the product, so maybe consider subsidizing the cost of shipping by increasing your product prices or encouraging multiple purchases in your store.

Self collection:

Some customers don’t mind collecting directly from you if they live nearby. This way they can avoid the delivery cost. But this is entirely up to you.

Courier overview:

There are 4 different types of couriers:

  1. Door to door  This is the most common, and for most online businesses the most time effective, as time is money. The courier will pick up the parcel from you and deliver it directly to the customer. If delivering from Major city to Major City, this will probably be the most cost efficient. Most door to door couriers will require you to sign a contract and perhaps buy a minimum amount of deliveries but this will work out cheaper in the long run. PO Boxes can’t be used and rural / outlying areas can be prohibitively expensive.
  2. Counter to counter  Relatively affordable and no contract necessary. Typically one rate nationwide. Postnet and Aramex (PnP) even Pep store now provide this service.
  3. Counter (or store) to door  SA Post regular letters or Aramex’s pick n’ pay store to door service. Relatively affordable and no contract necessary. Typically one rate nationwide.
  4. Door to counter  They will collect the parcel from you and deliver to a convenient location of the customers choice.

 

Our recommendations:

In our experience these few suggestions are the way to go when selecting and setting up your shipping options. 

  1. Allow for self collection. 
  2. Most online shoppers are happy paying between R35R60 so if your parcels are under 2kg offer at least one shipping option that’s no more than R60 (ideally R35).
  3. To increase your sales completion rate try configure your shop and products to offer free shipping. Ie if you sell a necklace at R300 put it on for R350 and have free shipping. 
  4. For a new business or a business wanting to change their strategy the process of signing up with a courier can be a bit overwhelming. Maybe start with a storetodoor option such as Aramex or PostNet. Aramex’s offering is more widespread and the parcels are, on average, delivered quicker at a price of R99.99 (as of Nov 2019).
  5. A great incentive for people to buy more in your store is to offer Free shipping over… (eg, free shipping for orders over R500 ). 
  6. Try to offer international shipping as we know that the whole world will be dying to get their hands on your unique items. In this case using the South African post office is fine. Outgoing international packages with SA Post seem to arrive at their destination in a reasonable amount of time (anywhere from 2  4 weeks). This seems to be the most cost effective solution as many couriers can charge upwards of R350 for a letter.

Once you have done your research and selected the best courier/couriers (it’s good to have multiple options) for you you can select your shipping options.  

https://nalacollective.co.za/store/

  • Items that were either designed by you, or manufactured by you, in Africa. 
  • Items that meet the previous condition but were made by someone else, so long as you have their express permission to sell them.
  • Printables (designed by you)
  • Creative services (such as photo shoots, fashion design, eventing, catering etc).
  • Unaltered imports, branded products (international brand names other than African Designers)
  • Alcohol, tobacco, or any legal or illegal drugs or pharmaceuticals.
  • Anything illegal
  • Livestock or live animals
  • Pornography
  • Anything not locally designed or handmade that has not been given the okay by our team (This restriction is including but not limited to things like property, cars or car parts, firearms, computers and general technology, and certain services).
  • All products must be shipped from within Africa, no exceptions.
  • All store approvals are entirely at Nala Collective’s discretion.

There are three options

1 You package the item and send via your chosen shipping method.

2 You can also optionally allow your customers to collect their orders from you directly.

3 COMING SOON: You store your items with the Nala Collective team, we will package in our unique packaging with your Brand info included and send it off. More info to follow.

The method you like best. Our system supports using all shipping methods, and also has integration with many of South Africa’s major couriers. More information here

Nala Collective works with a wallet system in which you can select your preferred payout method. Send a request for the money or get paid out on your chosen date.

This charge is added for each time you’re paid out to offset the cost the bank charges us for doing a transfer to your account. You’ll only be charged it once per payout and you won’t be charged at all if you haven’t made any sales for that payout period. You can read more about our payout system over here.

Yes. Currently only stores in South Africa are supported, we are working on being able to go world wide in the future. You yourself don’t have to be South African  we welcome all nationalities living in South Africa.

As many as you like. This is your store go wild.

There are many benefits, and your Nala Collective store can happily coexist with your online store. By selling on Nala Collective you get to benefit from our collective and individual marketing strategies, for more info. All vendors will also be featured on our Facebook page. In other words by joining us you have a dedicated marketing team working tirelessly to bring traffic to the Nala Collective online store.

No contracts, no obligations, you can cancel your store at any time if you wish to. However should you not complete your orders or should we receive more than 3 complaints about your product quality or service we reserve the right to remove your shop from the Nala Collective market place.

There are two options to pick from and we will have more diverse packages coming in the future. Pick which one works for you here

Do you have further questions which we haven’t addressed. Please email us and ask away info@nalacollective.co.za.  

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