Alfa, a Vocational School Student Earn Hundreds of Millions in Revenue from Selling Vegetables
At the age of only 17, this vocational school student from Yogyakarta has successfully started a vegetable-selling business, earning a monthly turnover of hundreds of million rupiahs.
Muhammad Alfa Priandito, a student at Al Hikmah Gubukrubuh Vocational School in Yogyakarta, is not shy about selling vegetables at the Yogyakarta market every day after school.
Despite being relatively young, Alfa has proven his entrepreneurial skills and achieved a turnover of hundreds of million rupiahs from his vegetable-selling business.
Inspirational Story of a Vocational School Student Successful in Business at a Young Age
Quoted from the YouTube channel "Pecah Telur," a vocational school student majoring in software engineering (RPL) admitted to engaging in business since elementary school. At that time, he used to sell various snacks at school, such as martabak and donuts, due to the upbringing of his parents, who taught him to become an entrepreneur from an early age.
"So, back in elementary school, around fourth grade, I used to go to school while selling snacks like martabak, donuts, and other market snacks," said Alfa Priandito.
Before venturing into vegetable sales, Alfa's family income came from his parents, who used to sell vegetables at the market. However, since the pandemic a few years ago, their business was on the brink of collapse due to a lack of suppliers caused by the impact of COVID-19.
Alfa's family brainstormed and tried to find other business opportunities. They briefly engaged in cultivating oyster mushrooms to sell at the market. To assist his parents, after school, Alfa had to immediately go to the market with a motorcycle carrying oyster mushrooms for sale.
"While others played after school, I went to the Wonosari market using a motorcycle with a box at the back, carrying around 20 kilograms of vegetables. Only about 4 to 5 kilograms might get sold," explained Alfa.
Although he initially made significant profits as the oyster mushrooms gradually sold over a quintal, Alfa faced another challenge due to bad weather, leading to a failed harvest.
Eventually, he sought a new business opportunity to ensure a continuous income. With a capital of 6 million provided by his parents, Alfa started a vegetable-selling business. With this capital, Alfa began purchasing vegetables from local farmers in his village, and he would resell these vegetables to markets or other consumers.
Tips for Success in Vegetable Sales from Alfa
Since starting his business, he gradually experienced significant profits. In a day, he could even make a profit of around 6 to 8 million rupiahs. During the current summer season, Alfa's business faces challenges, and the harvest is not as optimal as in previous months. However, the 17-year-old vocational school student still manages to achieve a turnover of up to 100 million rupiahs on average, despite a decline from the previous month.
"Previously, it could reach 6 to 8 million per day. Now, because the weather is not supportive and there is a water shortage, especially in the Gunung Kidul area where water is scarce, it has decreased by around 2 to 3 million," said Alfa.
"The monthly amount is around 150 million or more, now 60, 70 at most 90 million or even more, depending on the harvest results. So, on average, it's around 100 million or more per month," he added.
The vegetables he obtains from farmers for resale are diverse, including gambas, oyong, pare, cucumber, eggplant, chili, oyster mushrooms, and others.
Through his business, Alfa states that his intention is to help small farmers in his area sell their crops at a fair value. He claims not to seek significant profits from his business, as the turnover of hundreds of million rupiahs will be returned to the farmers for their farming capital.
"Usually, farmers can only plant, cultivate, and harvest; they cannot sell. So, I help farmers sell their crops," he explained.
"We help farmers by lending them money or providing a certain amount of capital to plant certain vegetables," Alfa added.
If he has a considerable amount of vegetables to sell, Alfa usually sells them to the four major markets in the Yogyakarta region.
Having achieved success at a young age through hard work in vegetable sales at the market, Alfa, as an vocational school student, admits to often receiving ridicule from his peers. Nevertheless, he states that he is not ashamed and continues to remember his parents' advice to work hard without paying attention to what others say.
"Why be ashamed? You're not causing harm to others. Those who feel ashamed are the ones who spend their parents' money just to follow their peers' trends," expressed Alfa.
"Let others talk like that, but you prove it with your results later on."
Challenges and Opportunities in the Vegetable Sales Business in the Digital Era
In recent years, online vegetable businesses have become quite popular in Indonesia. The vegetable business is considered to have good opportunities for both professional and novice entrepreneurs. One reason is that vegetables are a staple food in Indonesian society. The increasing demand signifies a greater opportunity to profit from the online vegetable business.
It's understandable that many entrepreneurs want to try their luck in this vegetable business. However, there are also entrepreneurs who may not know how to organize and manage the online vegetable business properly to avoid losses. Like other business fields, an online vegetable business requires a well-structured vegetable business strategy to become a reliable source of income.
Not only in Indonesia, but in several other countries, vegetables are also one of the essential daily needs. The demand comes not only from households but also from other businesses, such as homeowners, restaurants, hotels, and many more.
From this overview, it is clear that the market share for the vegetable business is vast, ranging from small-scale to large-scale.
Some factors that make the vegetable business a promising and profitable opportunity include:
- Vegetables are a daily necessity.
- Sales are not limited by time; they can be sold in the morning, afternoon, and evening.
- They can be sold in small and large quantities, both through collaborations and direct sales.
- There are various sales methods, from selling at home, going door-to-door, renting strategic places, to online vegetable business.
- Suitable for operation in both rural and urban areas.
- It can be started on a small or large scale.
- The required capital can be adjusted.
- No special skills are needed to start the business.
- Profits are calculated based on the price difference between retail and wholesale prices, making the selling price flexible.
- The possibility of experiencing losses or bankruptcy is very low.
Like two sides of a coin, if there is a positive side, there is also a less favorable side to something. Similarly, with the vegetable business, despite its good opportunities, it also has challenges and risks like various other types of businesses. Here are some challenges, obstacles, and risks in the online vegetable business:
- Consumers prefer fresh vegetables.
- Some types of vegetables can change condition quickly, so proper care is essential.
- Consumers may negotiate or ask for discounts, so you must always be prepared to offer them.
- There are numerous types of vegetables, so you need to remember and manage them carefully.
- High business competition.
The Role of Social Media and E-Commerce Platforms in Alfa's Business Success
WhatsApp has become one of the social media platforms used by Alfa to directly communicate with farmers.
If previously Alfa had to visit and survey each farmer one by one, now Alfa is facilitated by the use of WhatsApp. Farmers who are familiar with Alfa will usually contact him directly through WhatsApp to sell their vegetables.
Although Alfa still sells his vegetables traditionally to traders in the market, the use of WhatsApp helps him in establishing communication and trade relationships with farmers.
WhatsApp also allows for two-way communication between Alfa and the farmers. The ease of traders reaching each other using WhatsApp gives the business an added value compared to others. (Nisa)