Hamburg-based secondary market research firm yStats.com has released a new report titled “Africa B2C E-Commerce Market 2018.” The report tells of the growth potential of nascent online retail in the region and details market sizes, consumer behavior and leading competitors for 5 African countries.
Africa’s B2C E-Commerce market is in the early stages of development and accounts for below one percentage point of global online retail sales, as figures in the yStats.com report show. Nevertheless, some countries on the continent have seen rapid growth of digital commerce, driven by improving connectivity rates, especially mobile Internet. Africa has the world’s highest share of Internet traffic stemming from mobile devices – smartphones and tablets. In countries such as Kenya, the vast majority of Internet connections are comprised of mobile data subscriptions.
South Africa is the region’s largest B2C E-Commerce market. Although online shopper penetration reached just about one in ten Internet users in 2017, online retail sales have been growing by double-digit rates, according to data cited in the yStats.com report. Also in Egypt, robust growth is expected through 2020, with Internet penetration on the rise and the government having adopted a national E-Commerce strategy to boost the sector’s development. In Nigeria, E-Commerce sales are expected to maintain strong growth due to current low penetration, despite the recent economic downturn which has affected several top online retailers. Furthermore, online shopping is gaining traction in Morocco, with the percentage of Internet users making purchases online nearly doubling between 2015 and 2016, and in Kenya, this share grew even more rapidly and reached a double-digit figure as of 2017.
Clothing and electronics are among the top categories purchased by online shoppers in Africa, while their favorite payment methods include cash on delivery, credit card and mobile money services, with some variation among the countries covered in the yStats.com report. Jumia Group has emerged as the region’s strongest B2C E-Commerce player, registering over three million customers across multiple countries in Africa. Other popular online shopping platforms include Takealot in South Africa, Konga in Nigeria, Souq.com in Egypt, and Kilimall in Kenya, among others. Furthermore, international E-Commerce sites such as Amazon.com, eBay.com and Aliexpress.com are popular destinations for digital consumers in Africa, as are sellers on social media, such as Facebook.