Visa Launches “Where You Shop Matters’ Initiative to Support Small Businesses in Kenya

Visa Launches “Where You Shop Matters’ Initiative to Support Small Businesses in Kenya

Visa has launched its regional “Where You Shop Matters” initiative that aims to champion and enable entrepreneurs while encouraging consumers to support small businesses in Kenya.

The campaign will help support small businesses through its Visa Small Business Hub, a merchant platform providing tools and information on how to start, run, and grow small businesses. 

The Hub will also feature leading merchants who embody the passion and entrepreneurial spirit of small businesses across Kenya.

Africa, Beneficiary of Visa Foundation’s $210 Mn in Funding to Small Businesses

Alongside a new SMB resource hub, Visa has published the COVID-19 CEMEA Impact Tracker highlighting the recent effect the novel coronavirus pandemic has had on commerce for consumers and small merchants in Kenya.

The findings of the report highlight increased anxiety with consumers staying away from all but essential retail. 65 percent of consumers polled reported going grocery shopping less often, while 49 percent reported taking public transportation less often. 

The impact of the pandemic still hasn’t made a big impact on transactions on public transport as nearly a third of the surveyed consumers saying that they still pay with cash when using public transport. 

During the pandemic, many consumers in Kenya have started shopping online for the first time for essentials. 39 percent of consumers surveyed say that COVID-19 has led to their first online grocery purchase, while 43 percent have made their first online purchase from pharmacies. Overall, the report points to a shift towards online commerce, with cash transactions being replaced by digital payments. 

The study also found current conditions have served as a catalyst for food delivery services as 42 percent of consumers polled saying that they made their food delivery purchase. As consumers and merchants focus on safety and hygiene, contactless payments have also increased during the crisis with enabled merchants seeing an 88 percent growth in contactless usage post-COVID-19. 

Commenting on the report’s findings Corine Mbiaketcha, General Manager for East Africa at Visa said: “As consumers adapt to the current restrictions, many have changed how they shop and turned to online outlets for their shopping.

These changes present challenges but also enormous opportunities for all merchants, including small businesses.”  

According to the report, 53 percent of consumers admit to now spending less while also highlighting a trend that suggests shoppers have transformed how they shop. 

Asked about spending habits, consumers are increasingly optimizing their trips – 73 percent buying in bulk, making lists to avoid impulsive purchases, and buying non-perishable items to ensure fewer trips.