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5 tips for buying fresh food online in Ibadan
Food, Foodstuffs

Online fresh food shopping: 5 tips for buying fresh food online in Ibadan

Looking to buy fresh food online in Ibadan? Apply these 5 tips to enjoy a seamless shopping experience.

The online shopping culture has gradually grown in Nigeria, especially in the post-COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Online food orders will grow by 16% in 2024. The substantial growth of buying fresh food online is because of the allures of e-commerce: it’s convenient, relatively cheaper than brick-and-mortar stores, and fast delivery. 

Despite the growth, many Nigerians are still wary of buying food online. Substandard products, payment insecurity, and the prevalence of online scam pages are common reasons for apathy toward online shopping. Although the reasons hold water, you can still enjoy a seamless online shopping experience if you follow our tips.

5 shopping tips to note before buying fresh food online in Ibadan

1. Read the terms and conditions 

It’s likely you didn’t read the terms and agreements on your mobile device before clicking “I agree.” However, vetting the terms of service helps to understand the legitimacy of a service provider.

Why? 

The terms and conditions provide a bird’s-eye view of the services you should expect, including data privacy and return policies. Data privacy shows the company cares about data rights, usage, and security. For example, every PricePally customer has the “right of access” to request a copy of the information about them. 

A lack of data privacy policies tells prospective buyers they’re at risk of “over-personalized” communication or data misuse. In 2021, 4 in 10 consumers said they’d refused to buy from a brand because of concerns about personal data use. 

Consumers are concerned about data privacy.

Shopify 2021 data showing consumers' concerns about data privacy
Shopify 2021 data shows consumers’ concerns about data privacy

Return policies prioritize excellent service in cases of unmet expectations or product damage. In 2022, Invesp discovered that 92% of consumers would return if the seller had an easy return process, while another 62% checked the returns page before purchasing an item. 

Despite online vendors’ bizarre popularity of the “no refund policy” in Nigeria, it’s illegal, per the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Act (FCCPA). PricePally offers returns and refunds as part of its commitment to customer satisfaction. 

The Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Act (FCCPA), which explains consumers' rights to refunds and returns

Before shopping for fresh food online in Ibadan, ensure the return policy of the prospective vendor tick the following boxes:

  • The eligibility for returns and refunds: It tells you the items eligible for return or exchange and the specific conditions for returning them. For example, you may be ineligible for a return or refund after removing the original tags or product seal.
  • Return timeframe It explains the window for lodging complaints and the procedures or documentation for return logistics. For example, PricePally gives a six-hour window to lodge complaints about personable food items after delivery. Besides, the timeframe informs you about the return duration. 
  • Conditions for return shipping: It provides information about the party responsible for shipping costs and arrangements. It may be you (the customer), the vendor, or a third-party logistics service. 
  • Refund method: It captures payment gateways for refunds. You may receive your refund as the original payment, store credit, or an exchange for another item. 
  • Dedicated customer support: It clarifies the personnel and platform (e.g., email, social media, phone call, or live chat) to resolve return complaints. 

2. Watch out for bogus prices and shady discounts

Nigeria is struggling with 18-year-high food inflation; therefore, probing for discounted food items is financially understandable. However, fraudulent online vendors often use “too good to be true” offers to steal from unsuspecting consumers. 

For instance, in 2023, an Instagram vendor “sold” a Play Station 5 game with a market value of over #500,000 for #350,000 to an unsuspecting buyer. The scam episode suggests that you should be wary of unreasonably discounted products. 

3. Read customer reviews 

Always read customer reviews before buying fresh food online
If the service is good, customers will talk about it. Pay attention to reviews. A cursory check on the search engine (e.g., Google or Bing) and social media (X, Facebook, Instagram, or Tiktok) will tell you about the service quality of a business. As a result, beware of business pages with a disabled comment section or without positive reviews about them. 

4. Payment security

Sorting payments with credit or ATM cards is almost a given with online transactions. Your bank details are sacred, and you shouldn’t be quick to input them on platforms that don’t prioritize card security. 

Compliance with regulatory bodies, like the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), should be high on your security checklist before initiating transactions online. PCI DSS is a security standard that prevents the fraudulent use of credit and debit cards, and it’s mandatory for any organization that accepts card payments. 

At PricePally, for example, we partner with PCI DSS-compliant organizations, such as Paystack and Thepeer, to process payments, as we don’t store card details on our website for maximum security. 

5. Delivery transparency

Online shoppers typically expect free, fast, and on-time delivery. But delivery transparency is the ultimate brand character that builds customer trust and retention. That’s why 45% of shoppers look for businesses that “clearly show anticipated delivery,” while another 22% of customers will not continue to shop if there is no guaranteed delivery date. Before shopping with a food brand online, ensure it has a lucid and trackable delivery time.

Where can I buy fresh food online in Ibadan?

PricePally is an online grocery store for fresh food and household supplies. We source food items directly from farmers, making them 40% cheaper than local markets. That’s why you can shop with little money on PricePally. As of the time of writing, we operate in three metropolitan cities in Nigeria (Abuja, Lagos, Port-Harcourt, and Ibadan). 

We also let you split food costs with your friends or other shoppers through Pally. As a result, you can buy food items in bulk or retail quantities at a price that works for you. 

Other benefits of shopping for fresh food online on PricePally include:

  • Convenient order channels: You can order through the website, mobile apps (Android or iOS), and WhatsApp (aka April, the shopping assistant). 
  • Extra service: PricePally provides surface-level preparation (e.g., deseeding pepper and washing and cutting vegetables) for selected food items. 
  • Multiple payment options: You can pay through a direct bank transfer, Paystack, or digital wallets (e.g., Pocket and ALAT by Wema).

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