GoBeBa sees upsurge in orders from panic buyers due to Coronavirus fears

On-demand e-commerce logistics platform Gobeba has reported experiencing an upsurge in orders as Kenyans move to online platforms for purchase household items. On Friday and over the last 3 days , orders went up 200 % in the on demand e-commerce platform as people chose to have shopping done for them. This comes amidst the outbreak of the Coronavirus and in wake of governments directive to Kenyans to avoid crowded areas.

The platform saw an increase in groceries, gas and alcohol  by 200%, 100% and 50% respectively, an indication that most Kenyans are moving online in pursuit of food stuff and other household items. Other items being purchased in the platform include water and sanitizers.

Peter Ndiang’ui, Gobeba’s co-founder, attributed the meteoric spike to the fact that Kenyans are avoiding shopping malls to purchase items online, following the outbreak in the country.

“We have noted a rapid increase in our key categories on Gobeba. Our gas and grocery segment has registered the highest increase with most Kenyans buying these items on our platform. With the rising demand, we are working with various suppliers to meet the rising demand and help Kenyans access household items from the comfort of their homes. We experienced significant surge in demand of sanitizers on the platform even though certain orders went unfulfilled due to stock outs,” Ndiangui said.

Panic shopping set in across Nairobi last Friday after the country announced its first case of Covid-19. Shelves ran empty as Kenyans prepared for a possible directive to stay at home, which has led to a shift in consumer behavior.

Peter Ndiangui added that training of their riders on delivery of items to customers is currently ongoing with strict measures to ensure they keep safe during this period.

“Even as we work to get household items to customers in time, we have also equipped our riders with sanitizers and information on hygiene maintenance as they do deliveries to our customers. This is in an initiative to ensure our riders and customers are safe. We are also encouraging our customers to use cashless payments in a bid to help prevent the rise of this pandemic,” Ndiang’ui said.

In the time of social distancing, many Kenyans are now moving online to ensure that they stay away from crowded places. Even as supermarket shelves run empty and finding ways to deliver to customers through delivery companies, the government has urged Kenyans to stay at home to reduce the rate of spread.


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