When it comes to local products and brands, we love to say nothing but positive things and facts to encourage people to support them! We’ve been seeing the rise of thousands of local brands here in Egypt covering everything from daily wear, luxury fashion, skincare, haircare, stationery, home decor, and much more. So by now, unlike a few years back, we are finally being provided for all our needs by Egyptian manufacturers and most of the products can be bought online and have it to your doorstep.
It sounds like heavenly perfection, right? Well, we have a teeny tiny problem there. See, with our ongoing campaign #Chatterersgoinglocal posts and articles, we’ve seen over hundreds of local shops on social media, and we’ve been receiving some alarming price tags as well; if we may say!
The whole idea of helping someone to make their ends meet, and also help other entrepreneurs keep their business going seems very convenient, except when it comes to some of the price tags that don’t sound local at all. So, why is the price tag sometimes so high is the question that left lingering with some of the brands.
After asking a few of the business owners and with a little research, we’ve come with these reasons below. But of course, the debate is open for further additions and discussion:
High-Quality Material is Not Always Available!
The first and foremost problem that might cause a rise in the price tag is the unavailability of the material here. Of course, this does not apply to all businesses, but this can be apparent in the cosmetics department, and more departments where specific materials should be shipped from abroad. So the product provider has to go through all the dilemmas of getting things in the country and pay extra taxes.
Manufacturing Fees Can be Very Expensive!
If you want to launch a new collection, most of the business owners are obligated to produce a large number of pieces so that the factory accepts the order to produce the collection. Even if the business owner deals with a local small workshop, the cost adds up and it’s not dirt cheap as we assume. For example, according to a shoe brand owner, the price of a pair of shoes can cost up to 400 L.E if not more.
Competition and Cloning are Real
Competition is real in this business, even if it’s local and it’s all about creativity. Small businesses can produce high-quality products, but because they are still lowkey, other bigger names copy the same concept. Thanks to the great marketing exposure, they get all the profit and the smaller businesses don’t sell, and in many cases, they have to close their shops. So, hoping that a product or two would cover some expenses, their go-to solution is to set higher costs.
Exposure Means so Much Cash!
For a business to grow, it needs of course exposure and specifical exposure on social media. As it is all business, if you don’t pay for a post to be boosted, most of the time, if not all the time, the post will be shown to only average 2% of your overall follower’s number. Meaning that, if you want your work displayed, you have to set a decent boosting budget to market your products, and that’s only on social media itself with no external help from any marketing agencies.
With all of the above points being said, this did not stop many of the creative makers from producing great quality products to the customers. And as we said before, as a magazine, we are all about shifting the attention to the local businesses so they can thrive and provide the Egyptian customers with what they need. So, yes the prices can be high, but it is the consumer’s choice at the end of the day. And we can also look for alternatives if we don’t agree on the price.
We’re done for now, but here’re some great local treasures to check out:
Our Interview with the Founder of Jay Egypt, Yasmine Tharwat, the Knight in Shining Armor for Local Brands!
Persistence is her middle name and she doesn't rest until getting the job done. Having a lot of experience in everything fashion related, she's our go-to girl when it comes to Elie Saab, Marc Jacobs, Ralph Lauren, or Alexander McQueen.