Cheki.co.ke is an online marketplace where major car dealers, importers and private sellers post their cars for sale
Cheki.co.ke is the leading motor vehicle website with more car buyers and sellers than any other site in Kenya. “It is an online marketplace where top dealers, importers and private sellers post their vehicles for sale in the country,” observes Kevin Kibiego, Cheki’s marketing manager. The online company provides a state of the art advertising medium for Kenyans to sell and buy cars, vans, trucks and bikes among other automobiles. It also provides a one stop destination for all buyers of Japanese import cars to Kenya, by centrally hosting cars from leading Japanese dealers and importers.
Established in 2010, Cheki.co.ke is a division of Cheki Africa Media which operates and invests in leading marketplace websites in several East and West African countries. It offers a safe and secure online platform for car sellers and buyers to interact and purchase their vehicles at no additional cost. Besides, Cheki provides other resources including car insurance and financing, price guide information and motor vehicle loans to help potential buyers find their dream vehicle.
“Shopping for cars tends to be a difficult process due to lack of authoritative resource,” affirms Kibiego. Therefore, the need to set up Cheki originated from the desire to create a marketplace for buyers and sellers while enhancing convenience within the market by providing a host of information for users. Additionally, the online company wanted to make shopping for cars simple and transparent.
In the aggressive business world, especially in today’s economy, every advantage counts to establish a business in the top of the industry. To this end, Cheki has created an edge over its competitors. “Key to success has been the trust of the brand as the key selling point,” affirms the marketing manager. The company provides comprehensive information therefore, buyers know what to expect before meeting a potential seller.
Issues of security have been effectively dealt with. Cheki has a strong account management team responsible for verifying details provided by the dealers and private car sellers including the model, mileage, price, and if it is a new or used car. In some cases, the company’s team is responsible for photographing and uploading photos on the website. This facilitates the verification process ensuring that what customers see on the website is similar to what they expect to see on the ground.
Kibiego observes that Cheki provides a wide array of safety tips to individual car buyers to enhance safety.
The provision of a price guide helps potential buyers to know and compare the current market rates of automobiles in any region.
Most remarkably, Cheki has partnered with a number of leading loan and asset finance providers, making financing much easier. With access to multiple banks and finance companies including CFC Stanbic, CIC and Family bank, buyers will easily find the best deal at the lowest possible interest rates. “Financing is up to 90% value of the vehicle but varies from one bank to the other,” avers Kibiego. The applicant would have to put up the difference as a deposit.
Growing by leaps and bounds
Since establishment, Cheki has grown rapidly and has attracted major dealers within the market who have come to showcase their inventory on the website.
Key achievement is the interaction between car sellers and buyers. The online company currently connects over 20,000 buyers and sellers every month, making the car buying process simple and convenient.
According to Kibiego, Cheki’s success in the Kenyan market informed the need to replicate the same in ten other countries across Africa including Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda and Tanzania among others.
The online company has two revenue streams. Private sellers, who lack a physical location to showcase their cars, are charged Kshs. 870 to post them online. On the other hand, there is a flat monthly fee for dealers who have an inventory of more than 50 vehicles. Some dealers such as Smart Autos and General Motors have a custom domain on the portal allowing for individual branding.
Cheki.co.ke goes offline literally
Powered by trust and good online reputation, cheki.co.ke hosted a car bazaar at the Carnivore Grounds on July 2015 dubbed Cheki Sato. The online company extended its value offering by organizing a face to face meet up with an aim of connecting buyers and sellers and educating them about the motor industry.
It acted as a touch point between Cheki and its customers, besides offering an opportunity to do additional market research by understanding the trends within the market from dealers, suppliers and partners.
Participants had the opportunity to get professional advice on buying, selling, financing and maintenance of vehicles from Auto experts as well as other event sponsors.
According to Kibiego, the event aimed at educating customers and exposing them to a range of car purchasing options alongside information that would enable them to make great decisions in regard to selling, purchasing and maintaining cars because this is what Cheki is all about.
“Between 1500 and 2000 people attended the event,” says Kibiego. Moreover, there were 11 partners including Shell, Kingsway Tyres and CFC Stanbic who provided significant value and expressed their total satisfaction.
Cheki Sato provided a good platform where users who were not familiar with the Company’s brand expressed their interest as they saw the value of doing their car shopping online.
The event brought on board about 1,000 vehicles that were carefully selected and vetted through Cheki’s curated price guide, which determines the market rate for any car make and model within the Kenyan market. This ensured only the best quality at market competitive prices was showcased.
Customers enjoyed a pleasant, seamless car buying experience at Cheki Sato, just as they do on Cheki.co.ke.
What the future holds
The online company focuses on updating its website to include additional resources and toolkits for car buyers and sellers, making it easy to find a car on the portal.
It also focuses on maintaining market leadership. This will be achieved by creating brand awareness and incorporating a wide variety of marketing strategies, as well as providing options for high-end car users.
PLAYERS: Cheki Africa Media
BUSINESS: Cheki is an interactive motor vehicle website which connects buyers to sellers
‘X’ FACTOR: The trust the brand has created is a key selling point
ON THE LOOK-OUT FOR: Cheki is optimistic to sustain its market leadership and enhance brand awareness