Digital Marketing in Kenya is all about the Sale – Kapish? 

 March 7, 2018

By  mainaalex

Let’s stop talking about internet marketing in Kenya for a moment shall we? Let’s stop talking about the internet too. The word internet in IM is a red herring when we look at the bottom line.

All things being equal internet marketing is all about the sale.

It is not Search engine optimization. It is not creating websites that ooze machismo. It definitely is not about adding twitter followers or jobless Kenyans liking and sharing your Facebook page.  Without the sale, internet marketing is just a word used to fleece unknowledgeable clients off their money.

And a lot of money shall you spend.

Think about it for a second. How much money do you expect to spend marketing your services and products online? How much have you actually spent?

I know you will hate this question but here goes

How much money have you made from your website in the last 3 months? What is the rate of return of your online budget for your business?

I know it’s sexy in corporate offices to get away with deploying huge billboards on Waiyaki Way. Words such as brand awareness are very popular in such cases. Tell someone to cost it and he has no idea what you are saying.

For most businesses, the only statistics that owner of the business is given is an invoice. The billboard will be 500,000 Kenya Shillings per month. We expect to have 1 trillion gazillion people seeing that ad.

What may work in publicity stunts should not be allowed to happen in online properties.

Remember this diagram from Marketing school?

digital marketing in kenyaJust as you do it offline so does this diagram help you succeed online. In later articles we shall discuss how it helps you with your business.

Do not let your online marketing department get away with generic statements such as eye balls etc etc. You need statistics. If your website isn’t giving you actionable information, get rid of the site or even better, get rid of your online marketing department.

Some Statistics You Need as an Owner of a Website


It’s actually a good idea to know the number of visitors who come to your website. Why a marketing manager would fail to answer the question “how many visitors came to your website yesterday at 2pm?” is waaaaay beyond my comprehension.

Aren’t these the eyeballs that the billboard vendors keep yapping about? So why doesn’t the marketing team have a clue what they are?

Or maybe the truth is something that’s a bit bitter to swallow?

Traffic statistics are not meant to be used in your conversations at the bar as you boast about your achievements. They are meant to identify the strong areas on your property, the weak areas, and the best options for marketing and real data that can be used to create a successful marketing campaign.

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For example

It’s not beyond reality that a website with only 3 visitors a day makes more money than one with 1000 visitors a day. I have the data to support this too.

The 3 visitors a day site is properly targeted and the marketing campaigns are not aimed at 1000 visitors a day but 3 people who would be interested in their product or service.

Stop looking at the amount of traffic and start looking at the conversion rates of your website.


I wouldn’t waste my time on the number of visitors on my website unless I have looked at the conversion rate.

It’s a simple calculation really.

The number of visitors who did something I wanted them to do on my site divided by the number of visitors to the site.

I want to see an ever improving number every month.

The goals of your website or online campaign may be different at any time.  You may want people to buy your products in your store, you may wish to have more people joining your newsletter, you may also be running a branding campaign.

You need to have a goal and a target and the conversion rate gives you the data you need to create a profitable online campaign,.

For example

If your website converts 5% of its traffic into newsletter sign ups, you can now be able to budget for a marketing campaign.

If you want 1000 sign ups this month to your site newsletter, you shall need 20000 visitors to your site.

It costs you 0.1 cents in US dollars to get a click to your website on Facebook.  So to get 20000 visitors your budget shall be 20000 x 0.1 = $2000 or 200000 ksh.

Ohhh, so internet marketing is so expensive? Oh yes it can! especially if you hire a statistically challenged internet marketing guy.

The sale ain’t as cheap as the cheap seo service providers will make you believe.


I know I know, “we advertise in Facebook” is like the new Kenyan Marketing Anthem.

“When we advertise with Facebook, we get 10 billion visitors”, said with a very serious face. How they manage to keep from laughing is a mystery to me

So if I’m selling Tractors, I should now hire some social media agency in Kenya to pay Facebook money to those hormone filled girls from Facebook so that they can look at the engine specs? Why not give the money to charity? Facebook and your social media agency are not a charity but they do accept your money.


Answer the following next time please

  1. When traffic comes from site X, how many minutes do they last on my site?

  2. When traffic comes from X, do they buy my product?

  3. When traffic comes from X, how many of my website pages do they go to?

  4. Are there some traffic sources that you have ignored that actually make you money?



I’ll confess so bear with me. As someone who’s good at understanding the meaning of online data, I have once in a while been not entirely honest about numbers.  The most popular metrics being, Alexa. Oh Alexa.

Take Alexa Data with a Pinch of Salt. The Top 100 Websites in Kenya may be a great article to get traffic but it surely is filled with untrustworthy data if it’s based on Alexa.

It’s the most popular number ever when Kenyan advertising agencies are trying to weasel their way into your pocket. Our Alexa is xxxxx we are the 65th most popular website in Kenya.

Oh really?

Who told you that, Alexa?

Please understand one thing, if I don’t have an Alexa toolbar on my computer, I will never be seen as a visitor to your website. Unless you have installed that annoying Alexa data plugin on your site. Now why would anyone ever install that bulky spying toolbar on their own computer? Most people don’t. I know I don’t.

But I do… tsk tsk

When I want to increase a client’s Alexa ranking because they are making noise about their Alexa being too low, I install it on my computer and visit your website often. I get a few Indians involved too.  It’s easy money for them and less complaints for me.

Unfortunately for the web owner, not a single extra shilling is earned by their site.

Sometimes it’s better to play at the casino than giving your money to cheap seo providers in Kenya. That word can turn out to be very expensive.

Enough of that.

I’m actually writing this because for a second day in a row, Zuku has forgotten to supply me with internet. I had to mention zuku for you to get the point. If the sales on your website are as poor as zuku internet, get another internet marketing provider. I have been busy looking for an Airtel modem as I was typing this.

Website no giva tha mani, no giva the job to digital marketing company in Kenya. Kapish?


Its all about me only

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