A new report has shared that the top market contributors to e-commerce in Africa (excluding the North Africa region) over the last 3 years were South Africa, Nigeria, and Kenya. The report, publish by global payments company, Visa, also revealed that Ghana is showing growth in e-commerce activity as it also replaced Kenya in the top three contributors in 2020.

According to Visa, during the COVID-19 lockdown, the region saw new e-commerce users rise by 5% when compared to the active base in SSA the previous year.

β€œThe three leading markets in SSA are starting to mature, providing the region with an established foundation and, when twinned with the growing penetration of eCommerce, it offers players in the payment space an opportunity they can capitalise on while helping to further accelerate the expansion of eCommerce in the region,” said Lineshree Moodley, Head of Visa Consulting and Analytics (VCA) in Sub-Saharan Africa.

πŸ“· Top e-commerce countries in Africa (excluding North Africa region)

COVID-19 pandemic effect on e-commerce

The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on e-commerce and changing shopping habits was not only felt across Africa but across the world too. A consumer survey that covered Β Brazil, China, Germany, Italy, the Republic of Korea, the Russian Federation, South Africa, Switzerland, and Turkey, found that half of the survey’s respondents now shop online more frequently and rely on the internet more for news, health-related information, and digital entertainment.

This shift towards online shopping by African consumers also correlates with the spike in e-commerce Venture Capital deals in Africa reported during the second quarter of 2020. Specifically, there was reported to have been a particularly high level of investment activity at the seed stage, totaling 17 deals in the first quarter and second quarter of 2020 in comparison to only 22 deals over the whole of 2019, and just 21 in 2018.

More digital world

As also confirmed by Visa's report, the world has become more digital as people have been bound home more due to the various lockdowns across the continent as well as the fear of contacting the coronavirus.

This has translated into e-commerce experiencing significant growth rates around the world, and even recent setbacks as a result of the continuing COVID-19 pandemic haven’t stopped its rise. In fact, according to recent GroupM estimates, eCommerce sales are projected to grow to $7 trillion across the globe by 2024.

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