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Why Nigeria overtakes S’Africa, others African economies in online shopping

More facts have emerged on why the Nigerian online shopping space is dominated by South African firms.

A recent survey has shown that Nigerians shop more online than other sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries.

GeoPoll is the world’s largest mobile survey platform, with a network of 200 million users in Africa and Asia.A continent-wide survey carried out by GeoPoll, which carried the study on five African countries including Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda, Kenya and Ghana, said though there have been significant growth in online shopping on the continent, but SSA still don’t trust e-commerce sites.

But Nigerian technology experts are worried on why the rise in online shopping failed to reflect in making the country the highest in financial inclusion.

According to the survey, 66 per cent of Nigerians buy items online every few months compared with 60 per cent in South Africa and 45 per cent in Kenya.

At least 55 per cent of Ghanaians and 51 per cent of Ugandans have never bought anything online. The report discovered that many of those who had tried online shopping had only tried it once.

Among the top reasons cited for not frequently using online shopping sites were lack of trust, shipping costs, unsupported payment methods, or because a friend had a bad experience.

The GeoPoll revealed that many complained of unreliability of some sites, poor delivery and the purchase process. Others felt that there is no need for online purchases as the items were readily available at their local store.

Majority of shoppers in Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda paid on delivery for items bought online. However, in South Africa, 50 per cent of shoppers preferred to pay using their debit card and a further 26 per cent use their debit card for online purchases. Cash on delivery in South Africa is also the preferred mode of payment at 20 per cent compared to mobile money.

Besides, eCommerce sub-Sector in Nigeria is estimated to worth $10 billion with some 300,000 online orders expected each day. The worth is projected to hit $13 billion by 2018.

But despite the economic gloom in Nigeria, eCommerce players claimed about 20 per cent growth in traffic at the just concluded ‘Black Friday’ sales.

Looking at shopping traffic on the recent Black Friday, which ran between November 23 to 29, across different eCommerce platforms including Jumia, Konga, Yudala, Spar, Yandi, Dealdey, Kaymu among others in Nigeria, is usually the Friday after the American Thanksgiving, and it is one of the major shopping days of the year in the United States.

Konga, through its Yakata 2016 sales, claimed to have witnessed the company’s biggest shopping period in its four year history. The online ecommerce giant revealed that it processed 155,000 orders totaling N3.5 billion within the sales period.

Konga Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Shola Adekoya, said: “Yakata 2016 has exceeded all of our expectations in terms of sales; we had been cautiously optimistic that we would improve on last year’s period, but with the Nigerian economy as it currently is, we had been conservative with our projections. However, it seems that there are hundreds of thousands of savvy shoppers keen to make their Naira go a little bit further at the moment; hence they came to Konga to find the very best deals.