Tag: ecommerce marketplace software

E-Commerce Marketplaces in Africa

E-Commerce Marketplaces in Africa and the Secret Behind their Success

A large continent with as many as 54 countries, business in Africa, is a tough nut to crack. But then, what’s a business without challenges, right? Africa with its fast-growing population and markets is becoming a hot and important opportunity for businesses which a lot of eCommerce store owners are grabbing it now.

Africa has outstanding potential as a growth market for business which is underestimated and misunderstood often a bit due to lack of infrastructure, illiteracy, poverty etc. But a lot of eCommerce marketplaces are taking up it as a challenge and are bringing about the transformation which seemed impossible earlier.

African eCommerce Statistics

Countries like South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, Morocco, Senegal, Ghana all have large domestic marketplaces today which are growing fast incredibly well. The 2018 United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) B2C E-commerce Index which measures an economy’s preparedness to support online shopping based on four indicators: bank or mobile money account penetration, internet usage, availability of internet servers and the reliability of postal services ranked 151 countries globally, including 44 African nations. The results of which were as such;
(Image Source: Statista, eCommerce South Africa)

  • Mauritius top-ranked the index and has the second highest proportion of shoppers on the continent.
  • Libya, ranked 13th in Africa for e-commerce readiness, having the highest proportion of online shoppers on the continent among people aged 15 and older.
  • Nigeria, South Africa and Kenya estimated for nearly half of Africa’s estimated 21 million online shoppers.

eCommerce South Africa, User in millions
(Image Source: Statista, eCommerce South Africa, User in millions)

Since 2014, overall, the number of online shoppers across the continent has grown around 18% which is higher than the global average. Africa’s consumer e-commerce market valued at $5.7 billion in 2017 is less than 0.5% of the continent’s GDP, far below the global average of 4%.

eCommerce Craze in Countries

In Nigeria, with a population of 195 million people, has the most ecommerce sites and 40% of Africa’s ecommerce ventures have headquarters in Nigeria. It has an internet penetration of 70% and 26% of the population were recorded to have bought something online via phone in the past month as of 3rd quarter 2017.

South Africa on the other hand with a population of 57.4 million and 65% internet penetration, recorded 18% of mobile shoppers in the past month as of 3rd quarter 2017. South Africans are found to spend mostly in the fast food category of online shopping, while groceries are still purchased in-store than online.

Kenya with a population of 51 million and an impressive 82.6% internet penetration is home to M-Pesa, the mobile wallet provider started by mobile telecom provider Safaricom. More than 45% of Kenyan adults use M-Pesa according to Emergent Payments. 85% of Kenyans have adopted electronic means of payment, including bank accounts, mobile phone prepaid cards or other payment products. You won’t believe, about 75.5 % of mobile shoppers were recorded in the past month as of 3rd quarter 2017 in Kenya.

Ghana, having a population of 29.46 million and internet penetration of 45%, has taken eCommerce so seriously that it has a website dedicated specifically to ecommerce for SMEs.

Growth of Local eCommerce Platforms

Although Amazon, the eCommerce giant, showed no interest in the African market, a lot of local eCommerce platforms have emerged in the past few years to such extent that about 90% of investment is going those eCommerce start-ups in five African countries. One among such that has gained the limelight is Jumia.

“Jumia” – the Amazon of Africa:

(Image Reference: https://www.jumia.com.ng/)

A Nigeria-based group, Jumia which was founded in 2012 by the Berlin-based Rocket Internet, is Africa’s best-funded ecommerce start-up with more than 3,000 employees. It operates in 14 countries in Africa and the Middle East, with each country having its own site.

Jumia has solved the logistics barrier in Africa to a great extent with more than 500 motorbikes and trucks delivering their online products to customers in the country’s eight largest cities. Jumia accepts COD, which, again, is the preferred payment method for most Africans and has raised $150 million in 2014 alone.



Konga.com, founded in 2012 in Nigeria that does not operate outside of Nigeria, opened Seller HQ, a third-party marketplace in 2014, now has about 1 million customers and receives over 300,000 unique visits daily. Its own logistics network — KOS Deliveries has a fleet of over 200 vehicles (vans, trucks, and motorbikes) and pick-up points and distribution centres in every part of Nigeria.

Konga even has its own payment system — KongaPay — that works with all banks in Nigeria. In 2018, Konga was acquired by a local hardware and information-technology services company, Zinox.

Success Secrets

  • The African population is fast growing and urbanizing. It may reach 1.7 billion by 2030.
  • Africa is witnessing an industrial revolution.
  • The infrastructure gap is nearing closure. Africa’s annual investment in infrastructure has doubled to around $80 billion a year which represents a big opportunity for investors and entrepreneurs.
  • New broadband connections and mobile data traffic are increasing which shows a good scope for mCommerce.

For an eCommerce marketplace to be a success in Africa is not as easy as other continents but is not impossible either. With a well-developed multi-vendor marketplace software, your strategies and market study, you can figure out excellent growth opportunities in Africa.

Online eCommerce Marketplace software

Seven Upcoming Industries for Multi-vendor eCommerce Marketplace in Middle East

The multi-vendor eCommerce marketplace landscape in the Middle East is undergoing a tremendous change. The total number of online sales in the region is expected to touch $49bn in 2021, with mobile phones becoming the most preferred source to shop online.

In the past few years, the Middle East has come in the limelight due to multiple positive developments such as younger working demographic, advanced infrastructure and high connectivity rates. Therefore, the aforementioned statistics are not surprising at all.

And, guess what? Cash on Delivery dominates the payment method for online purchases in the region. Countries like Saudi Arabia are set to become the topmost online retailer by 2020 in the B2C eCommerce market by surpassing the current trendsetter – UAE.

You may also like to read: Reasons Why You Should Have a Multi-Vendor App for Your Ecommerce Marketplace Like Amazon

Therefore, when we think of the multi-seller eCommerce platforms in the Middle East, there are many. And all of them belong to diverse industries which invariably shows that there is potential waiting to be tapped fully.

Adding to that, here are seven upcoming industries for multi-vendor eCommerce marketplace in the Middle East that are already receiving a fabulous response by consumers:

1) Laundry

This particular industry is thriving in the Middle East all thanks to the increasing urban population in the region. According to the UN Development Programme, 60% of the population is below the age of 30 and with textile and tourism booming in the Middle East, there is really no dearth of disposable income.

Laundry eCommerce solution

That’s why you have so many online and mobile laundry eCommerce shops like Smart Washr, Safleen, CleanLine and Ghasili that allow their customers to book their laundry through Android and iOS mobile apps. Simple!

2) Car rental and office leasing

The tourism industry in the Middle East is on a high. The region is not only witnessing an increasing number of people traveling to other parts of the world but also more and more people are traveling countries like Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt and Iran.

This upward trend has also led to a boost to car rental services in the region, which is expected to grow at a CAGR of more than 9% by 2025. Similarly, with so many startups seeing the light of the day, office rentals have become equally popular.

Dubai’s RentSher Middle East is the region’s first online platform for services and product renting, specifically targeting office leasing.

3) Restaurants

Any business related to food is a hard one to crack. Apparently Middle East has found the perfect way to do so.

According to a 2017 KPMG report on the Food & Beverage industry in the Middle East, 87% of food operators are listed on delivery apps with 60% of UAE customers using an app to order food compared to just 18% of US consumers. Such acceptance in F&B marketplace isn’t just restricted to home food deliveries, restaurants are also tasting the eCommerce flavor.

on-demand restaurant mobile app

Saudi Arabia’s first online restaurant reservation portal ‘YoTable.com’ has changed the way the way people choose to eat in the region, including splitting the restaurant options according to the national cuisines for faster decisions. The online marketplace will soon expand to other cities in the Middle East.

4) Bookstores and eLearning

A recent survey by the Arab Reading Index states people in the UAE spend 50+ hours reading while an average reader in the rest of the region spends an average of 16 hours! The number of hours vary considerably. However, it doesn’t mean there is no requirement of online book shopping.

Jarir Bookstore, a thriving eCommerce business based out of Riyadh, was initially a physical retail shop selling office supplies, books and educational aids. But by looking at the increasing demand of the millennials, it expanded its services online by adjusting to the disrupting technologies and changing consumer buying patterns.

5) Health and beauty

A 2017 PwC report states health and beauty is one of the major categories when it comes to offering multi-vendor marketplace solutions in the Middle East, constituting 48% of the pie among other categories like electronics, clothing and footwear, and furniture.

Pharmancy mobile app builder

Saudi Arabia’s beauty eCommerce marketplace Golden Scent is already breaking records. It tripled its customer base in 2018 after launching its mobile app. Moreover, it raised its portfolio by 25% after branching out to the mobile medium.

6) Travel and booking

The focus on online travel and booking in the Middle East heightened only a few years ago. The reason for the positive development is the younger, tech-savvy generation that is hooked on to their smartphones and prefer using the device to make any bookings or shop!

online appointment booking solution

More than 50% of the UAE population relies on the internet to purchase travel-related products or to plan their holiday, with Saudi Arabia (35%) coming in second on this list. Almosafer, a Saudi online tourism platform, predicts an increase in resort-based destinations, growth around religious tourism and continued momentum throughout 2019.

7) Baby care

Tapping the potential of niche markets opens up avenues for success – no matter which country or region you belong to. And one such niche market is baby care. Do you know the aforementioned market in the Middle East and Africa was worth $1174.6mn in 2016 and is expected to reach $1605.4mn by 2025?

The reasons why the market has grown exponentially in these regions is because of increased child hygiene awareness and rise in the rate of borth in the evolving countries. Mumzworld is doing an excellent job, selling clothes, toys and food for both babies and moms online in the whole of Middle East, with an inclination towards the markets in countries Saudi Arabia and UAE.


If you want to be a big player in the Middle Easter eCommerce spectrum, you have to adapt to the ever-changing market trends. Pay attention to what your consumers want. Leverage technology to provide the best possible multi-vendor marketplace software solution. It’s an exciting time for eCommerce in the region, make the most of it this year and beyond!

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eCommerce Marketplace

6 Little things that’ll make a Big Edge in the Ecommerce Marketplace

Every entrepreneur gives all his effort to make his e-commerce portal a successful venture. Using innovative methods and to synchronise the necessary steps at a correct time is the basic thing that may guarantee you a success. E-commerce is the most competitive industry nowadays and to shine in the crowd of thousands to attract your target audience is the biggest achievement of any business. Magento marketplace software solutions though help you to get an impressive e-commerce platform but few steps are supposed to be taken by an entrepreneur to leave an imprint on the industry.

Every business has its own limitations and no set of rules may ensure you a success but following a few little things may definitely help you make a Big Edge in the E-commerce Marketplace:

multivendor marketplace

Recommended blog: 5 Successful eCommerce Marketplace Businesses in Saudi Arabia

1. Personalized experience:

This step will emerge as the biggest key to impress your customers. Giving your customers a personalized shopping experience may not only increase your sales but will build a trust. An Entrepreneur can collect vital information regarding their preference, taste and needs and serve them accordingly. To create this experience you can offer personalized recommendations, special discounts on anniversaries, birthday and one-to-one interaction to review your product and other customer support. Utilize the information collected from the survey efficiently and determine the customer’s behavioural pattern. With these steps, you can connect with the customers directly.

2. Influential Relationship:

An association with influential personalities may act as an effective promotion strategy for your brand. Many e-commerce start-ups make mistake by using investors or media to promote their ideas or products as this may not generate an expected result. Using an influential personality or collaboration with influential personalities may help you steal the attention of target customers instantly. Bringing a focus on your product by valued testimonials, introduction to powerful personalities or mention in popular magazines is easy and have a long-lasting impact on the audience. These efforts will definitely generate effective results

3. Fresh Content:

The biggest myth of the e-commerce industry is that this business is all about products, offers and discounts. They may be an important part of the business but not the only way to ensure your success. There is more to be done to attract your audience and increase your margin sales. A set of informative content can be as engaging for the e-Commerce sites as for the other websites. An original content can help businesses to grab viewers’ attention. The original reviews or feedbacks on products and after-sales service can help customers make sorted decisions. The content plays a vital role in shaping the viewer’s opinion and helps them in making choice without any doubt.

4.Utilize a Mobile’s Potential:

In this digital era, one cannot ignore the power of mobile phones. Mobiles are an easy and convenient way to reach the wide audience in no time. According to market experts, m-commerce will contribute a massive share of 53.9% of all e-commerce by 2021. Hence, it is advised to upgrade your e-commerce venture by using Magento multivendor marketplace extension online and make your venture a mobile-friendly site. The e-Commerce apps will help you offer a personalized experience to your buyers. Even adding many customizable features will help buyers feel closer to your e-Commerce site and will make your site more attractive.

Recommended blog: Event or Show Booking Marketplace are Growing in South East Asia

5. Introduce Voice Shopping:


Voice shopping may be new to this industry but is shaping the future of e-commerce industry. There are many voice assistants software available in the market that is contributing well to the increasing popularity of ‘voice shopping’. The entrepreneur may use this feature to increase sales and add a personalized touch to their shopping experience. Using native language and adding few local words to the product description may help them feel connected to the product. This trend is sure to bring revolution in the future o e-commerce market. Use this feature to build a personal connection with your customer and offer a higher sense of comfort.

6. Augmented Reality:

The augmented reality (AR) is proving itself a very useful tool in our everyday life. Augmented reality is the result of using technology to superimpose the information sounds, images and text on the world we see. They do not replace reality they add to the reality. Implementing this latest technology may enhance the shopping experience of your customers. Latest technologies have always been a centre of attraction for the audience and using these latest trends in your website will definitely boost traffic to your site. The use of AR will surely ensure a convenient and personalized way of shopping.

Al solution


The key to the success of any entrepreneur is to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and technology of the market. The new generation of buyers believes in using the latest technology and easy shopping. It is a highly challenging task to bring success to your e-commerce venture but not an impossible one Magento multivendor e-commerce marketplace solution makes it easy for an entrepreneur to keep your e-commerce venture updated. Following these basic tricks and tips will steer an e-Commerce business in the right direction and may guarantee its success.

b2b online marketplace

B2B Online Marketplace – an untapped opportunity requires different approach than B2C & C2C model

Considering the shift in the online buying habits of customers which is highly forced by technological changes and other factors like change in customer expectation, increased customer value has improvised the demand of online marketplaces. Due to this, online Marketplaces are doing vast growth and driving robust sales.

Ecommerce Marketplaces – Business Models

Business models are identified based on how and with whom the transactions are talking forwards.

  • If the consumers are selling to consumers, model is known as C2C Businesses
  • If the Business owners are targeting to Consumers, it would be B2C Businesses
  • And when Businesses are targeting to other businesses then it would be B2B Businesses

The concept will remain same in the ecommerce marketplace business as well.

If you look around the marketplace platforms you’re using will make you understand how one is different from another.

Online B2B eCommerce Solutio

OLX where the customer is selling product to another customer creates a C2C business platform, Amazon is the example of B2C marketplace where business is selling to customers whereas platforms like Alibaba, Indiamart are B2B marketplaces where the business needs are fulfilled by another businesses.

Here, B2B marketplaces can grow in two directions, Vertical businesses and Horizontal businesses. Industries like plastic, chemicals, automobiles etc. are falling in B2B sectors.

In B2B or B2C, the concept of online marketplace will remain same.In general terms, Marketplace offers a platform to multiple vendors who can sell their products to buyers. Marketplace owner is the middlemen connecting vendors and buyers who offer variety of different brand of products at a single platform.

Key differentiating Factors – B2B and B2C Ecommerce Marketplace

Though the concept is same, business model and the usage differentiates one marketplace with other. There are different buyer segment in each of the business model, customer of B2C model is different from B2B model.

Why it’s not a good choice to interchange B2C ecommerce Marketplace with B2B ecommerce Marketplace?

Customer from B2C and C2C Marketplace requires easy access, quick delivery, easy payment option, quick buying process. They buy the product in low amount.

Whereas customer in B2B ecommerce marketplace segment requires

  • Bulk product orders
  • Discount based on quantity
  • Availability to edit or change and validation of purchase order online
  • Quotation for orders
  • Custom quotation
  • Different payment option acceptability

B2B eCommerce Trends

In this way, the way buyers deal with the seller makes the difference.

Rising B2B Ecommerce Marketplace Trends

Due to shift in the way business buy products, B2B online marketplaces are rising.
“As per the report, today 74% of the B2B buyers do online research at least for half of their work purchases.
Also, the 73% of B2B millennial are involved into purchasing decision that has different mind-set and preferences for buying. (Reference: forrester.com)

Online eCommerce Marketplace

So, the merchants need to be there where your customers are. Though the rises of B2C ecommerce marketplaces are high, actual revenue from B2B ecommerce marketplaces are high and touching the sky. B2B online marketplaces are an untapped opportunity; it provides convenience and easy accessibility to large new audiences.

Also, the start-ups have many advantages to tap this market, like-

  • Low entry cost
  • Easy to set-up
  • No burden of making huge inventory

B2B E-catalogues – replacing print catalogues

Online catalogues are helping both entrepreneurs and buyers because of following important features –

  • Gives easy access of products to customer
  • Reduces labour costs
  • Real time integration with suppliers

Easy access, real time integration and link with suppliers enable buyers to look into the details at their own desktop without any transit error along with reducing labour and print cost.

There are various platforms available to build your own ecommerce B2B multi-vendor marketplace. Magento is highly used and advanced ecommerce platform providing full flexibility and scalability.

ecommerce marketplace trend for middle east

Ecommerce Marketplace Trends in Middle East

Ecommerce Marketplace is growing all around the world by providing its unique selling platform. It gives multiple opportunities to vendors to sell their products along with providing variety of products, brands and comparative price options to customers.

When ecommerce is growing in all the sectors and across the globe, Omni channel ecommerce platforms consisting Ecommerce website, Ecommerce B2B and B2C app building, web apps etc. enabling the business owner to enhance business opportunity.

Few Important Statistics:

Both B2B and B2C Marketplace sectors are growing in Middle East at good place whereas market size of B2B would be higher by 234.78% than B2C.

With its exponential growth, the market is expected to reach $22 billion by 2020.

Leading Products and Services Marketplaces in Middle East –

  • Airline Ticket
  • Hotel and Tours
  • Event tickets
  • Electronics
  • Books and Magazines
  • Clothes and shoes

While the sectors is growing, grab the opportunity and go with the trend to grow up your business be it B2B or B2C. Specialist features also dedicated for particular industry will add on to the benefits.

This infographic will give you idea about B2B and B2C ecommerce marketplace in Middle East.

Ecommerce Marketplce trends