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E-commerce

Internet access
Morocco, with its 36.2 million inhabitants, is a mid-sized country by African standards and has the sixth highest internet penetration rate across the continent. Internet penetration rate rose to 62.4% (63.67% according to Moroccan National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency) at the end of 2017 with 22.6 million Internet users (Internet World Stats). As such, despite accounting for 2.8% of Africa's total population, Morocco has nearly 5% of all Internet users in Africa. Over 90% of Internet users access via mobile (20.83 million) and their number rose by 31.69% in 2017. Morocco had 1.32 million fixed Internet users (ADSL) at the end of 2017, as opposed to 1.23 million in 2016. Fibre Optic Internet has only 36,347 subscribers (10,657 in 2016). 6.8 million users had 4G Wireless Internet access at the end of 2017 (2.8 million at the end of 2016, +143% y-o-y). The number of smartphones rose to 18.06 million at the end of 2016 (3.36 million higher than 2015) (National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency). As far as search engines are concerned, Google dominates the industry with a 96.31% market share, followed by Yahoo at 2.7%.
E-commerce market
The Moroccan e-commerce market is booming and is among the most vibrant in Africa. Morocco is ranked 6th among African states (after Mauritius, South Africa, Tunisia, Nigeria and Kenya) and 85th worldwide on UNCTAD's B2C E-commerce Index list. Retail websites affiliated with the Moroccan Electronic Interbanking Centre registered US$ 211 million income in the first nine months of 2017, an increase of 51.4% from the previous year. The Pan-African Jumia, which is the top online retailer in many African countries, is also in a leading position in Morocco, with more than five million visitors per month and 230,000 daily visits on average. Morocco-based Hmizate is also a key player in the market and has launched many special sales events (Black Friday, Mobile Week, Ramadan special) to compete against international retailers. As far as specialist websites are concerned, Inwi leads the electronics sector whereas Citymall and Lavieclaire dominate beauty and food markets respectively. Richbond and Azurahome generate nearly two-thirds of sales in housing and decoration. Decathlon and Vetement lead online fashion sales (more than 40% of specialised sales). Cross-border trade is less popular than in European countries owing to a general lack of secure online payment methods. Nonetheless, AliExpress has launched a local version of its website, and Amazon France along with several other intermediary companies deliver Amazon orders to Morocco. The lack of online payment systems has always been an obstacle for the development of Moroccan e-commerce. However, online payments and credit cards recorded strong growth in 2017 and 2018. According to the Moroccan Electronic Interbanking Centre, internet payment activity was characterised by strong growth during the first half of 2018, with the number of online payments increasing 32%. Additionally, internet payment systems such as PayPal are beginning to enter the market and are also gaining popularity in the country. Finally, the Moroccan Government is working on the implementation of policies and strategies that aim to accelerate the digital transformation of the country. The main goals of the '2020 Morocco Digital Plan' are to make Morocco a regional digital hub through the strengthening of digital export offers and the bridging of the digital divide and the transformation of the most important sectors of the national economy.
E-commerce sales and customers
According to the Moroccan Interbank Electronic Payment Centre, online sales made by credit cards and electronic payment methods stood at US$ 280 million, with 6.6 million transactions in 2017. The number of transactions increased by 82.1%, whereas the volume of sales rose by 50.3% compared to 2016. According to these figures, Moroccan online shoppers spent US$ 42.8 per purchase, which is lower than the American and European averages of US$ 86 and US$ 73 respectively. Nonetheless, it is important to note that these figures only take into account online purchases made by methods other than cash, which is in fact the most preferred payment method in Morocco. The total e-commerce value including cash-on-delivery transactions stands at US$ 2.35 billion and comprises 2.35% of total trade in goods and services, according to Hootsuite. Moroccans are changing their shopping habits and consumers are developing a taste for online shopping. The number of e-commerce customers rose above 4.2 million, which accounts for 12% of total population. This rate goes up to 15.5% in cities and drops to 2.5% in rural areas. More than half of customers would have made between 2 and 5 purchases per year. According to the Moroccan National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency Annual Report, saving time is by far the main reason that pushes consumers to shop online (55.3%), followed by special price deals offered on e-commerce websites (18.6%). The potential for mobile commerce in the country grows as smartphone usage continues to spread through Morocco, making it an important part of the market. According to a research conducted by Jumia, 73% of its clients visit Jumia using their phones, with a successful purchase rate of 70%. Additionally, smartphones are Jumia’s most popular product, both in number of items sold and in income generated. Moroccan stores are therefore investing more and more in mobile commerce, seen as the future source of growth of e-commerce in the country.
Social media
Moroccan Internet users are increasingly active on social media and spend on average 2 hours and 24 minutes per day on these platforms, and 2 hours and 53 minutes online in general, according to Hootsuite. The number of social media users is estimated at 16 million - 44% of total population - which represents a 12% y-o-y increase from 2017. Nearly all of them - 15 million users - also access their accounts via mobile, denoting a 15% y-o-y increase during the same period. According to the National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency, 77% of social media users check their accounts on a daily basis, a rate that increases to 80% in cities, and decreases to 68% in rural areas. Facebook is by far the most popular social media network with nearly 16 million accounts, out of which 13.2 million belong to users under 34 years old (8.2 million males under 34 and 5 million females). Additionally, of the total number of accounts, 36% belong to female users and 64% to males. WhatsApp users are slightly more active than those on Facebook. Instagram has 3.5 million users in Morocco, accounting for nearly 10% of the total population, and is more popular among men, with 43% of accounts belonging to female users and 57% to males. Twitter and LinkedIn are among the least popular networks with only 8% and 3% of Internet users being active on these platforms respectively. As of August 2018, the leading social media platforms by market share in the country were YouTube (50.19%), Facebook (43.4%), Twitter (2.74%), Pinterest (2.74%), Instagram (0.36%) and Google+ (0.18%).

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Actualitzacions: May 2022

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