E-commerce in Morocco represents a large horizon of opportunities for international sellers. According to EY’s most recent “Attraction Barometer,” Morocco has the most appealing business background for global investment activity in Africa. This is owing, in part, to the country’s role as the continent’s principal commercial center, located on the southern bank of the Strait of Gibraltar. It also reflects the country’s development in corporate governance, continued economic diversification, infrastructure investments, and sustained expansion in trade.
The e-commerce market in Morocco is thriving and considered to have the right infrastructure to become the next North-African hub. Indeed, it is ranked 6th regionally and 85th globally on UNCTAD’s B2C e-commerce list. In its being one of the 4 Moroccan imperial cities, Rabat runs the competition when it comes to e-commerce buyers density. As a matter of fact, during 2020’s four-month lockdown, it witnessed a 46% increase in the volume of transactions conducted through Moroccan e-commerce websites such as Jumia, as indicated by Morocco World News. Fostered by a 25% rise in the amount of money spent on online purchases, this city is viewed by e-commerce merchants as a goldmine. According to Google and Bain & Company, online sales in the MENA area will expand at a 28 percent annual rate through 2022, resulting in revenue growth from $8.3 billion in 2017 to $28.5 billion
Morocco has reached its high internet penetration rate of 75% of the country’s 37 million residents, according to the 2021 report published by Data Reportal. In the same source, it is also worth noting that there is a noticeable increase of 2.3 million internet users between 2020 and 2021. The Moroccan e-commerce boom was not restricted to pre-existing online stores such as Jumia and Electroplanet. ma. According to the research, the boom witnessed the proliferation of social peer-to-peer commerce as vendors and consumers used social media to overcome social distance constraints.
One of Morocco’s distinctive characteristics, at least as compared to other developing market countries, is that more than half of the population has a bank account. Statista’s January 2021 report shows that roughly three-quarters, or 74%, of e-commerce payments, are made in cash. Domestic credit cards account for 15% of the remaining mix, with overseas credit cards (5%), debit cards (3%), digital wallets (2%), and bank transfers (1%), each accounting for a sliver of the balance. While there are online payment solutions that are accessible such as PayPal, Moroccan e-commerce buyers feel more comfortable paying on delivery rather than carrying out an online transaction in advance. Though it has the second-highest internet penetration rate in Africa, Morocco has a significant impediment which is the lack of online payment options.
Fulfillment Bridge has collaborated with ChronoDiali, a well-established and reputable local eCommerce logistics service provider, and Cashplus, a leading payment solution provider, to provide a POD (International Payment on Delivery) solution. Together, they were able to harness technology in order to give Moroccan clients the chance to purchase on worldwide eCommerce websites while enjoying the ease and peace of mind that they were only paying for what they wanted. Furthermore, Fulfillment Bridge’s new service makes it simple for foreign merchants to enter the Moroccan market and simplifies the delivery procedure for Moroccan clients. As of today, Moroccan customers have the privilege to shop from international markets and pay on delivery by using their own credit card or a borrow a friend’s to make the transaction. Accordingly, parcels can be collected whether from the nearest collection point or directly from home.
As part of Fulfillment Bridge’s customer sensing process, research was carried out on a sample of 475 potential and existing Moroccan customers. The report shows that Shein, Aliexpress, and Amazon figure among the top 3 most-wanted marketplaces; followed by Jumia, Alibaba, and eBay. The rest of these markets are fashion retail giants. The same report also indicates that 50% out of this niche would opt for home delivery, rather than collecting parcels from the nearest pick-up point.
Electronics and media is Morocco’s largest category, accounting for 32% of total eCommerce revenue. As stated in the market analysis provided by e-commerce DB, Fashion comes in second with 26%, Furniture & Appliances comes in third with 17%, Toys, Hobby & DIY come in fourth with 14%, and Food & Personal Care comes in fifth with 11%. The food retail sector has grown in recent years, accounting for 13% of the country’s GDP in 2018. (USDA, latest data available). Although conventional channels continue to account for 80% of food retailing, large-scale distribution is predicted to account for around 30% of national consumption by 2025. (Ministry of Industry estimates). Several factors are impacting Morocco’s developing retail industry, including significant population expansion and urbanization, as well as an increase in disposable income.
Conforming to the RBC Global Connect report, Morocco has spent an average of MAD 40 billion on transportation and logistics over the previous two decades, continually improving its network. Except for phosphate, roads dominate inland transit in Morocco, accounting for 90% of people’s movement and 85% of commodities flows. Morocco’s road network has more than 57,330 kilometers of road, of which around 43,500 km are paved, as of January 2020. Morocco’s railway network spans 1300 kilometers, with 120 stations servicing both passengers and freight. With a 3,500-kilometer-long coastline spanning the Atlantic and Mediterranean seas, marine transport accounts for 95 percent of Morocco’s foreign commerce.
It is undeniable that the e-commerce industry in Morocco has been witnessing leapfrogs. Mainly setting the ground for a prosperous market, the country offers a great number of opportunities to local as well as global e-sellers. Interesting customer personae, a seamless payment method, and a great logistical structure are what identify Morocco from other countries in the region. As an e-commerce seller willing to get your ticket into the Moroccan market, you have the chance today to rely upon key players to make your business thrive. Fulfillment Bridge, along with Chronodiali and Cashplus has been working on making e-commerce in Morocco accessible to everyone everywhere. By untangling payment on delivery, international e-commerce sellers can actually provide the most-wanted competitive advantage in Morocco. The credit card on delivery solution is, indeed, an unprecedented move in the Northern-African region!