Nairobi: November and December drive 30 per cent more e-commerce revenue than non-holiday months, according to Ecommerce Holiday Trends, a report done by 2015 Benchmark.
Retailers therefore need to pay careful attention to their supply chains during this period, as operations and delivery are key to client satisfaction, maximizing brand exposure and increasing revenue.
Though Africa's e-commerce industry is still relatively small in comparison to more mature markets, it continues to grow steadily each year, especially in light of consumers having increased access to the internet via mobile technology and a fast growing middle class.
A McKinsey & Company report revealed that by 2025, e-commerce could account for 10 per cent of retail sales in the continent’s largest economies and translate into Sh7,650 billion ($75 billion) in annual revenue.
In the build up to the traditional festive season shopping rush, retailers – both brick and mortar and e-commerce stores – need to ensure that platforms are effectively managed to manage the influx of business.
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“This surge highlights the impact of holiday season spending habits and why retailers need to optimize their service levels should they want to capitalize on consumers’ increased spending power over this period,” says Oliver Facey, Vice President of Operations for DHL Express Sub Saharan Africa.
Retailers need to ensure that their supply chain management is agile enough to handle the increased volume of business. To maximize profitability, retailers need quick smart, cost-effective methods to fulfil orders timeously and accurately across multiple sales channels.
“As a service business, at DHL we ensure that have sufficient Certified International Specialists on duty, not only from an operational and customer service point of view, but also from support functions such as finance that will ensure we can resolve any account queries before the year closes,” says Facey while emphasizing the role of proper customer service in the success of any business.
“Ultimately, it is essential for retail operations to perform optimally during this busy period, as it’s an opportunity to demonstrate their capabilities to a larger audience. In the short term, it will maximize profits, but in the long term, deliver return customers,” adds Facey.