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e-commerce Platforms Suffer as More Kenyans Prefer to Transact on Social Media- Report

As the online marketplace gains traction, only 13 percent of Kenyans actually transact on ecommerce platforms such as Jumia and Kilimall.

A Kenya Digital Report by Global Advisory Firm, Dalberg shows that more shoppers and sellers prefer to use social media platforms where they can market and interact more closely, and pay for goods on delivery.

Online transactions in Kenya have further been slowed down by steep delivery prices and a poor address system in the urban area, putting a strain on the delivery process.

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“This figure (13 percent) underestimates the real extent of e-commerce, as respondents largely reported the use of marketplace platforms like Jumia and Kilimall, while the full breadth of e-commerce also encompasses digital trade through informal platforms,” the report stated.

Kenya has over a hundred online retail marketplaces and individual stores in the country.

The respondents were taken from 2,456 households across the country who are users of digital economy.

There are over 100 online retail marketplaces and individual stores in the country.

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A report by the Communications Authority of Kenya also cited high delivery costs, importation fees and charges, and poor addressing system as a hindrance to faster adoption of ecommerce.

As a result, more shoppers prefer buying items from social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram and TikTok. The popularity of the sites, coupled with a high rate of mobile adoption in the country have threatened the ecommerce sites, some on the brink of closure.

The report by dalberg also showed that 44 percent of self employed people and business owners had adopted the use of advanced digital services to boost their trade. 86 percent of these are able to use the services to communicate with customers and vendors.

Written by Vanessa Murrey

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