What do you sell? Let’s say you sell oranges. And bananas. And mangoes. You sell fruit. You’re a wholesaler. Some days you sell more oranges, some days you sell more mangoes. Some days are banana days. It’s hard to tell. The binder of sales receipts sits on your assistant’s desk, accumulating dust. Poor Saanvi! She’s so behind with everything, she may be able to tell you by next week how many crates of mangoes you bought last year. Good, but you want to know how many you have in inventory now, and how many you sold in the last two weeks. By today.

And you need to know because you’re talking to a distributor. Somebody got a wrong order, and he has a truck full of mango crates that he’s offering you at a quarter of the regular cost. Should you buy them? You’re tempted. They’re cheap. But you don’t know how many mangoes you have in stock. You don’t know how many you can sell in a week, and those crates may not last fresh for much more than two.

You pull out your phone and call Saanvi.

“How many mangos did we sell in the last two weeks?” you ask.

“I don’t know,” Saanvi responds with a snort. The poor girl has to divide her time between attending the front desk, dealing with inventory, and accounting. She has no time to run analytics.

“Can you find out?”

“I’ll call you back in an hour.”

It takes more than two.

“We sold almost ₹300,000 in the last two weeks.”

“How much of that was mango? How many kilos?” You ask.

“Kilos? I don’t know! I don’t have time to break down the receipts. I only enter the final amounts!”

You’re still tempted to buy the mangoes, but it’s too much risk. So you decide to pass.

Then your competitor passes by. The distributor offers him the mangoes. Your competitor also pulls out his phone, but he doesn’t call anyone. He simply consults his inventory online using ePaisa’s mobile point of sale. Then he logs into ePaisa’s dashboard to check how many kilos he sold in the last two weeks. He can only buy half the crates, he says, because he doesn’t have much space, but he’s confident he could sell those mangoes in less than a week. So he closes the deal.

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