Kiki’s Pot is a food vending and delivery business located in Ghana that was founded in 2016 by a single woman with a great vision. Mrs. Mandy envisioned a successful business and worked hard and with determination each day to achieve what she has today. Follow along to learn her story and her experience with Loyverse.
How did your business start?
We are a service provider, we deal only with food: fast food, a little bit continental and local on the side. Our business started in 2016. When we started this online and delivery service, this type of business was less prominent in the Ghanaian market. Customers used to go to the facility and pick up the food. I started thinking, why not offer a food delivery service to facilitate the people who might not have the time to pick up their food?
Prior to that, we were going only to a food festival which happens once a year. The festival is called Chale Wote Festival and is a big festival where many vendors participate and sell all kinds of things. After the festival, people called our number and asked us to prepare them dishes they had tried at the festival. This was the motivation to start. We started the business at home.
First, we had a small number of orders, but later the demand increased, and we had to hire a lot of riders to fulfill all the requests. We deliver the food to offices or homes, wherever our customers feel comfortable having lunch. As time went on, we had to move out. Our first pick-up shop was opened two years ago.
How did you first learn about Loyverse?
One of our biggest challenges was finding the app to use for sales, inventory, and all of that. When we started, at the end of the day, we would manually write down all of the sales, including information such as Customer name, Customer contact, the order details. Later on, we move to Excel as our tool to keep a record of the sales.
After three years, we met a local company that had software for us to use. We used that software for a while, but we understood that it was not giving us what we wanted: the sales analysis, the customer number, the number of visits for each customer, and sales by item for a selected period of time. Because of the lack of these options, it was becoming frustrating to work with this software. At that time, I started to search online for better alternatives. I found an app that I liked, but I had to call them because they were not from Ghana, they could not understand my English, and it was very difficult to communicate with them. Disappointed, I continue searching.
Then, I found Loyverse POS app. I studied the app myself to understand how it works, I did a couple of demos, and I thought, “This is it, this is what I am looking for”. This is how we started with Loyverse. Of course, I had to build everything from scratch because I had to add my items and arrange them in the correct way according to my menu. One thing that I found very helpful was the online customer service. I could type a question, and they would guide me step by step. I read the tutorials carefully to understand how everything works. It was something exciting for me because I had somebody 24/7 guiding me. It was risky as well because I could not see the end result clearly, but it was worth it.
One of the questions I reached out to customer service was how to add delivery fees. They explained to me that I could add the delivery fee as an item and indicate the price or leave the price empty to indicate the moment of the sale, and this worked.
Loyverse has dropped that stressful feeling during the day when you think of all the things you have to do and how to track the sales in the restaurant. Now I don’t even remember the last I was there, but I can use the Back office to track all the activity of my business in real-time from anywhere.
What has been a challenge you had to face as an entrepreneur?
I would mention the pandemic period. During the pandemic, we had to shut down completely. It wasn’t easy at all, because most of our workers work with us. I also have children, and my mother also lives with me. I could not risk someone geting infected and spreading the virus, so we shut down completely. During this time, there was also a lockdown in Ghana.
After the lockdown was removed, we started the business again. The economy has changed now, everything has become very expensive. The inflation has reached a very high level, but we cannot increase the prices of our products because the price of the ingredients is changing every day, and if we increase the prices of our products accordingly, it will result in the increase in prices 5X which does not make sense for the business. We have just been coping and taking it one step at a time.
How do you advertise your business?
We use Instagram to advertise our business. We have a huge customer base on Instagram. We have a WhatsApp customer base as well, and there we advertise our products using WhatsApp stories. We also use bloggers. We send them products, and they display them with their audience, and this brings traffic to us. We also do Facebook.
Are you using any of the add-on services that Loyverse offers?
I have a subscription to Advanced Inventory as well. The feature that I am using most is the stock adjustments. Not because the other features are not useful but I needed more time to explore them thoroughly. I have a regular job besides the restaurant. But, as much as I had time to check, Purchase Orders and Inventory counts seem very good features.
Did you and your employees have any difficulties learning the system?
Not at all. All the items that we offer in Kiki’s pot I have entered myself from scratch. I studied the system and was able to master it.
An advantage that Loyverse has in comparison to the old POS system that we were using is the Margin. I really wanted to see the Margin for my items, and I am really happy that Loyverse has this feature. It has really helped to streamline the raw materials. Now everything that goes out: a portion of rice with chicken, we know the number of chicken lefts, the number of portions of rice left, and the number of cups used. All these features were what I was looking for and did not find in other software that I tried prior to Loyverse.
Also, as I mentioned, the possibility of managing my business remotely is a dream come true.
Learning the system was easy because you have your manual. If I want to use or learn a feature, I go to the manual. I wish I had the time to sit and go through the whole user guide, but since I don’t have so much time, I check the tutorials for the features I am interested to learn.
Why did you decide to become an entrepreneur even though you are already working somewhere else?
What really pushed me was a situation that happened in the corporate where I work. Most of the senior managers come and go based on politics or connections. They come, stay for 6 months or a year and go, usually because they have links to another company. Me, even though I am a senior staff, I am not a manager and do not have many connections to other companies. If something happens, where would I go? I started my business so that if something might happen, an emergency, something unexpected, I have my business to rely on. Building my business gave me the opportunity to offer jobs for other people as well.
Of course, being an entrepreneur comes with challenges, and sometimes you wonder if you are doing the correct things. But, when you speak with other entrepreneurs and understand that they are facing the same challenges and these challenges are common, you have more determination to work toward a solution.
What advice would you give to young entrepreneurs?
My advice to young entrepreneurs is: Make sure you are determined and focused. Be aware that things will not go all the time according to your plan. Things will happen, and you will get shocked. You have to be focused and love whatever type of business you are venturing into. If you don’t love it once there is a shake, you will give up easily. So just be focused and determined and love what you do.
Thank you for your time and for sharing your experience with Loyverse Community.