The African business terrain is quite tough. It is not for the weak, but for the persistent and dogged. This is exactly the story of Jumia which started in Nigeria in 2012. Today, Jumia is not just an eCommerce company, it is a marketplace and an ecosystem spanning 14 African countries and offering premium services (shopping, food, flight, hotels, and production services etc). From Jumia’s success in Africa, there are so many things small Nigerian businesses can learn.
Identify new market opportunities and diversify
The reason why Jumia is called an ecosystem is that it identified new market opportunities and built them into viable businesses. This enabled the eCommerce company to diversify. So, when new competitors arrive and circumstances change in the retail marketplace, Jumia is quick to adapt. Take Jumia One for instance, which is an all-in-one app for all digital services you might have needs for. Instead of downloading a different app for each digital service you use, you can simply download Jumia One and perform all your transactions on the app.
Anticipate customer needs in advance
Jumia has always done a great job of innovating with new products, services, and tweaks to their business model. Being customer-focused allows you to be more innovative. You are always ahead because you listen and engage with customers. The need for convenience when it comes to shopping birthed Jumia and it has since evolved into a giant African eCommerce company.
Offer great customer experience
Jumia recognises that customers are king. Customers are the fulcrum of its business. And as such it has a very strong customer service team that engages with customers both offline and online. As a small company, your customers are sacred, you must do everything to make them happy. This is because the success or failure of your business is in their hands.
Deliver more value than your customers expect
Customers are insatiable. You cannot meet all their needs. However, you must meet a majority of their needs if you want them to return. The value they derive from using your service will determine if they would come back. In the case of Jumia, customers have a 7-day return window to return any product as long as it meets the terms and conditions of the return policy. If it does, you will be refunded your money.
You have to take risks in order to excel
Being regarded as the Alibaba of Africa is not a day’s job or a child’s play. A lot of risks have been taken to ensure that Jumia remains the market leader in eCommerce not only in Nigeria but also in Africa. While others have fallen by the roadside, Jumia is waxing stronger and is regarded as Africa’s first unicorn.