It is not a surprise because anyone that has visited Kenya recently will know that the nation is the global mobile innovation hub. There is no nation that does better than Kenya in mobile commerce. So Tekedia was excited when that call came from a leading organization like BuzzCity:
In many areas where the basic services are working, mCommerce suffers from poor marketing, particularly to lower income earners who form the bulk of mobileusers. Users are not always aware of the range of services available to them, they are not necessarily curious early-adopters of technology, and the novelty of these new tools and mechanics can cause apprehension. Yet, with the right offer, these challenges can be overcome.
Take, for example, Kenya which has the most successful and ubiquitous mCommerce system in the world. mPesa is a ‘branchless mobile banking system’ that allows users to pay for shopping or utility bills, wire money to relatives, or simply take a taxi home. Safaricom, the company behind mPesa, also offers interest-paying mobile bank accounts, micro-credit and micro-insurance policies.
Despite all these services in place, 31.97% of Kenyan mobile users in our recent Consumer Lifestyle Survey still requested ‘mobile money transfer services’ as a service that they would like to see offered to them.
It may be an indication of the size of the demand for such services, or the fact that simply by creating awareness of the potential ofmobile, mPesa has created more demand. Whichever it is, it proves the potential of the mobile commerce wave that’s about to break. If only we can get all those little details sorted out, we all stand to thrive.
Companies must stop saying the “future is mobile” to “now is mobile” because the mobile ecosystem is here. Most businesses are going mobile. If you do not have a mobile strategy, your survival as a going concern could be affected in this age. Oh yes, having a mobile plan is not just for competitive reasons, it is the business because very soon, business will evolve inside mobile.