The challenges against the advancement of online shopping culture in African states cannot be overemphasized. To get more consumers onboard, e-commerce players must continuously remain innovative.
Such innovation must be that which encompasses proximity, ease, cost effectiveness, local content, and a blend of delivery culture that tolerates the touch and feel which the population is familiar with.
Over the years, Nigeria’s e-commerce market leader, Jumia, has deployed its JForce and logistics partnerships to reach rural and secondary cities across the country. And more recently, the company is taking it further by adding more pick-up stations at strategic locations which helps take delivery services closer to consumers in secondary and rural settlements.
Florence Omobude, Owner of Survey Innovations is one of the agents leading the initiative in Benin, Edo State. Explaining the impact and benefits of her pick-up station, Florence said it not only brings e-commerce services closer to customers, it also helps them save more.
“The fact that my pickup station is here at Oliyah makes it more convenient for consumers. They don’t have to go to Ugbowo, Sapele road, Ekenwa Road to pick up their items anymore. They just have to walk in here at Oliyah to pick up their items. And for every item they pick up, Jumia pays me for it; and it saves consumers costs on delivery,” she explained.
Florence’ business story is one that tells both the market drive and empowerment impact of Jumia initiatives. Her journey with the company started as a JForce agent four years ago. “My journey with Jumia started as a JForce Agent in 2017. Here in Benin, I help people to place orders on the Jumia site and get paid at the end of the month,” she said.
In 2020, she got the opportunity to upscale and earn more from her relationship with Jumia. “So last year, when the opportunity came to partner with Jumia and own a pickup station using my office space, I was so excited and grabbed the opportunity. So this year in May, in Oliyah here, I opened my pick-up station with Jumia.”
Jumia had recently expanded its number of pick-up stations across the states of the federation in a bid to take e-commerce services closer to customers . The initiative, which covers rural and urban locations, thrives on partnership with SMEs to use their office space as pick-up stations. This allows customers to walk in and pick up their items, while the partners also have more income.