Jumia buyer habits bend towards consumables

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2021 00:00 | By
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Jumia App. PHOTO/Print

RETAIL:  The number of women entrepreneurs signed as Jumia merchants surpassed that of male led businesses in Kenya, says new trends report published by Jumia.

The online retailer yesterday unveiled its Africa e-commerce report dubbed Jumia Africa e-Commerce Index 2021.

Despite the growth of women owned businesses currently doing business with Jumia, the report shows in three African countries -Kenya, Nigeria and Cote d’Ivore - women-owned businesses suffered a seven per cent drop in sales during the pandemic.

In contrast, male-owned businesses in the same countries recorded a seven per cent growth over the same period, even as the e-commerce platform realised a shift from a preference for electronics last year.

Jumia leveraged its online data to illustrate online shopping trends in some 10 African countries.

The firm’s CEO Sam Chappate said the shift in purchases favoured consumer goods like sugar, cooking oil and beauty products.

“Kenyans are now increasingly considering online shopping for their everyday needs seeking convenience and competitive prices,” Chappate said at the company’s Nairobi headquarters.

The shift to everyday products during COVID-19, is part of a broader economic transformation led by the continent’s young, urban and tech savvy population.

It also explains why more women are listing their products on the online platform that now has over 1,000 pick-up points across Kenya.

Shift to rural areas

The pandemic lockdowns since March last year saw Jumia move into rural areas with data showing that Kiambu County emerging as the firm’s  third busiest market after Nairobi and Mombasa.

“By expanding our pick-up station network and working with local entrepreneurs, we are already seeing an acceleration of e-commerce penetration upcountry,” Chappate said.

Despite the positive trends, the report also reveals that e-commerce accounts for a paltry one per cent of retail sales in Africa, compared to leading markets like the US – where e-commerce accounts for 12 per cent of retail sales and China (20 per cent).

“With the increase in smartphone adoption, internet businesses in Africa could add $180 billion to the continent’s GDP by 2025,” the report says.

Nairobi emerged third in terms of volumes of orders made after Lagos and Cairo on 28 million.

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