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Moka’s strategy to stand out among competitors: Tech in Asia conference

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Moka is launching new services to improve the on- and offline experience for merchants.

As fintech is maturing in Indonesia, small and medium retail enterprises are increasingly adopting POS (point-of-sale) systems from players like Moka, Pawoon, and Qasir. Moka is currently leading the pack, especially after Gojek took over in April.

The startup provides POS tools and services for payments, accounting, ingredient procurement, and business loans. It claims to already have partnered with 40,000 businesses across the country. Meanwhile, Gojek’s merchant app GoBiz is currently used by around 500,000 merchant partners. The integration of both will provide Moka the opportunity to strengthen its position.

At the Tech in Asia Product Development Conference 2020-Virtual, Moka’s VP for brand and marketing Bayu Ramadhan said that the POS market is still big enough for everyone. According to him, healthy competition is very much needed to educate the market, especially to encourage more SMEs to adopt a POS system that can help accelerate businesses growth.

“The total addressable market for POS in Indonesia is around 2.4 million, but its penetration is only at 0.4% today,” Ramadhan said.

POS system providers are facing several challenges. It is still perceived as a tertiary need—merchants still have low digital literacy and low willingness to adopt a new system, even if it’s freemium.

In his session, Ramadhan explained the importance to understand and identify the product’s point of difference (POD) in order to gain an advantage in competition. “The key to your competitive advantage is not about being better, but about being different. Keep in mind that point of difference should reflect your product’s identity and values,” he said.

Bayu Ramadhan’s presentation at the Tech in Asia Product Development Conference 2020.

Ramadhan said Moka was the first POS provider that launched the payment aggregator feature, peer-to-peer (P2P) lending product, and procurement supply chain tools two years ago. These are some unique prepositions that make Moka stand out from the competition. Many other POS providers are catching up now by offering similar services with the result that they have become “point-of-parity (POP)” or mandatory elements.

Ramadhan believes that the COVID-19 crisis is a wake-up call for companies to improve their services. According to a Nielsen report titled “Asian consumers are rethinking how they eat post COVID-19”, Indonesia is among the countries who are least likely to change their behavior after COVID-19, meaning that Indonesian consumers will likely return to dining in restaurants, especially since the government has relaxed its social-restriction policy.

It’s the time to create new unique prepositions

POS providers must therefore think about what they can offer merchants and customers during the transition phase when businesses are starting to reopen under the new normal.

“This is the right moment for a message repositioning,” said Ramadhan. “Previously, Moka was perceived as a POS system that relies on offline, brick-and-mortar transactions. But since many merchants are closing down, we are now evolving to commerce enablement that supports omnichannel sales.”

This “commerce enablement” is for him a single tool that connects online and offline orders with the POS system.

Moka is working with various strategic partners to improve on- and offline experience. GoFood, for example, allows merchants to accept orders directly from Moka POS. On the platform Digiresto, customers can order through WhatsApp and have the food delivered via GoSend.

Moka also partners with e-commerce enabler Sirclo and website-builder Storelogy to help merchants getting their online stores right and integrate cross-platform sales data into a unified reporting dashboard.

Amplifying the brand’s new positioning

As for the offline experience, Moka allows merchants to accept GoFood pick up to limit queue inside the store. “We are going to launch a contactless dining feature soon that will allow customers to order through their smartphone and have the food served at the table,” said Ramadhan. “This will be our new POD for at least two years from now.”

The next step will be creating a distribution tactic to amplify the brand’s new positioning. There are several strategies that brands and marketing managers can use, such as Gary Vee’s content model or Google’s “zero moments of truth” customer journey model. Another effective strategy is, according to Ramadhan, a 360-omnichannel distribution where a brand collaborates with key opinion leaders for content creation across channels.

Ramadhan emphasized the importance of putting “soul” or emotional factors into words and images as it has a major influence on rational decision making for customers: “It is important to treat your audience as human as possible.”

KrASIA is a media partner for Tech in Asia Product Development Conference 2020-Virtual that is being held on July 1 and 2 (Indonesia series) and July 8 and 9 (regional series).