Jumia’s Black Friday sale now becomes Kenya’s biggest shopping event

Jumia MD, Sam Chappatte awards Charity Wairimu of Ruiru with an exclusive Huawei Mate 10 phone she won when Jumia Black Friday went Live on the platform on Sunday night. Charity Found the phone under the Jumia Treasure Hunt hidden under the men’s category.

Jumia’s Black Friday sale is turning out to be the biggest shopping event in Kenya’s calendar in much the same way Alibaba’s Singles’ Day sale, the biggest shopping event in China.

In China, shoppers flocked online to take advantage of Alibaba’s Single’s Day sale pushing the ecommerce platform to break its own record set in previous years.

Information released by Alibaba on the Singles’s Day sale just a day before Jumia’s Black Friday sale opened shows that the world biggest ecommerce platform netted Sh2.5 trillion shillings in the Singles’ Day sale.

And in Kenya, shoppers rushed online to take advantage of the Jumia Black Friday sales as early as two hours before the promotional deals went live, a trend that shows growing importance of ecommerce for consumers.

Data we have seen shows Jumia’s Black Friday (link) sale which kicked off on Monday set the internet on a rage as soon as it was launched at midnight.

Google analytics graph shows that traffic to the Jumia online shop shooting to the peak when the sale went live at 11.59 pm on Sunday and has remained high with small drops happening at night.

Data from Google Analystics on Black Friday activity in the three Kenya's online shopping platforms. Jumia and Kilimall are ecommerce sites while OLX is not.
Data from Google Analystics on Black Friday activity in the three Kenya’s online shopping platforms. Jumia and Kilimall are ecommerce sites while OLX is not.

Essentially, this means that many shoppers stayed up late on the day to catch the best deals.

The story is different for, OLX and Kilimall, the other two major and older online retail platforms in Kenya.

Even though both OLX and Kilimall have Black Friday sale campaigns, their traffic remained largely flat unchanged on the day in a trend that shows Kenyans preference for Jumia deals.

Jumia says the platform recorded close to two million shoppers on the first day of the campaign.

“Within the first hour, Jumia hit a momentous five times its normal traffic by midnight with a noticeable fast moving deals on TV’s, laptops, mobile phones, refrigerators and electric cookers. Hours after going live on Monday morning, Jumia witnessed significant application downloads attracting 10,000 new first time shoppers to experience the Black Friday event,” said Jumia in a statement released Monday.

Jumia Communication manager Pauline Masese told Money & Markets that smart phones  are still the biggest attraction in the platform moving five times more than they did in last year’s Black Friday sale.

But there is a new curious online shopping trend that has emerged in this year’s Jumia Black Friday sale.

For the first time, groceries have emerged as a major attraction to the Kenyan shoppers. Traditionally, electronic items, fashion and home appliances have been the biggest hits with the shoppers.

On Monday, shoppers rushed to reap from the Jumia grocery deals. Perhaps because of the rising cost of living, basic groceries such as wheat and maize floor and margarine were big movers when the sale started.

An interesting behavior in the sale on the first was the rush by shoppers for the margarine where most orders were the largest packages.

Margarine packaged in 1 kg containers was the biggest hit. That may be explained by the fact that it is selling for half price for the entire 31 days of the Black Friday sale.

But the trend also mean that Jumia has built trust with shoppers that they can now order for food items.

In the meantime, the Jumia Black Friday deals are still on for another 29 more days and shoppers have a chance to catch bigger deals from Treasure Hunt.

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