Growth on online sales: a case study of Tanzania Electric Supply Company Limited online electricity prepayment service (LUKU).

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University of Dar es Salaam
Selling on credit is one of the methods of doing businesses in this world. Doing business on credit terms means that one has loaned money to another person and therefore expect to be repaid in the future. Money loaned may or may not be repaid and thus the lender might be at a great disadvantage. Due to this credit risk, prepayment system as a new business model evolved whereby services/materials are delivered once they have been paid for. Improvement in the information technology enabled companies to service their markets online on prepayment service. Based on this, Tanzania Electric Supply Company Limited after experiencing huge un-paid energy debts for credit metering billing system, decided to move from this model to Outline Electricity Prepayment Billing System and then to Online Electricity Prepayment Billing System (LUKU) for its Small Power Users ( SPUs). Theoretically it is cheap and convenient to buy and pay online as one saves money and time but practically de energy buyers prefer to buy offline instead of online and thus a low level of sales to online energy buyers motivated this study on factors affecting growth of online sales on electricity prepayment service. This study reports on what hinder growth of online electricity prepayment service. A structured questionnaire with Likert scales measurements having both closed and open ended questions was used to gather data from 99 respondents, including 73 offline electricity prepayment buyers and 26 staff at both head office and its four Dar-es-salaam regions through convenient sampling. These staffs are the ones involved in planning, implementing and monitoring online bill payments. Many factors lead to less use of online payment facilities and these include, low level and absence of web knowledge and web illiteracy, low level of awareness for online payment services, fear of technological failure, difficulty of access to internet, high deposit amounts required by both banks and telecommunication companies for online payments, existence of many meters not suitable for online bill payments, complex procedures and low income. Again the study found that elimination of the above factors coupled with good management of the billing system, planning, innovative tariff and also good marketing campaigns can enhance online bill payments. The study further revealed that online prepayment biding system has generated new sets of problems which need special management attention. It further shows that online bill payments increase efficiency to transacting parties and also indicate that convenience is a factor favoured by many people to online bill payment.
Available in print form, East Africana Collection, Dr. Wilbert Chagula Library, Class mark (THS EAF HF5425.I265.O52)
Internet marketing, Online social network, Selling, Tanzania Electric Supply Company Limited, Prepayment system, LUKU, Online bill payment
Omari, M. H. (2011). Growth on online sales: a case study of Tanzania Electric Supply Company Limited online electricity prepayment service (LUKU). Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam.