‘Black Friday’ sales to increase e-commerce penetration

Kenya’s e-commerce penetration is expected to rise dramatically as consumers rush online to purchase items on offer in November.

Jumia, an online market place, said it will use its annual Black Friday season to double sales, thus deepening the country’s e-commerce penetration which stands at a paltry six per cent.

Despite high Internet penetration due to mobile connectivity, less than one product in every 10 is sold online, pointing to a struggling sector.

The Government through the Ministry of Trade, is keen on shoring up e-commerce.

“Our role as State Department for Trade is the promotion of (commerce), ensuring product diversification and the availability of markets for business community,” said Trade Principal Secretary Chris Kiptoo during a Black Friday vendor event in Nairobi.

Jumia Kenya Managing Director Sam Chappatte said they expect over 12 million people to visit the site next month.

“We want to reward our most loyal customers with our best deals. This is why we are launching App-Only-Deals this Black Friday,” he said.

Besides Jumia other e-commerce players in Kenya include Safaricom’s Masoko, Kilimall and OLX.

Traffic from Jumia’s app is reported to have increased from 20 per cent in 2016 to 31 per cent over the last year, pointing to the growing popularity of smartphones for online shopping in Kenya. 

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