Research by Crosby Textor Group (CT) provides valuable insights into the perceptions and behaviour of consumers and the future for retail in Nigeria, where the impact of the coronavirus outbreak of the economy holds significance for the sector.
The survey which was carried out in early July involving 1,000 respondents showed that the three important issues for Nigerians are poverty (47%), economy (36%), and the Covid-19 (36%) (ahead of National security, Terrorism and surprisingly, Jobs).
The respondents (87%) voted that the coronavirus has weakened the Nigerian economy and the country’s pandemic outbreak is in the early stage and rapidly accelerating.
Still, the majority sentiment was that the government has been too focused on protecting the sick at the expense of personal finances, jobs and the economy.
General spending pattern has been altered by Covid-19 uncertainties and lower earnings capabilities of households so that 7 out of 10 households have cut down on their expenditures to protect their finance, according to the survey.
A quarter of households say they have maintained their pre-pandemic budget while 3 percent say they are not sure of their position.
The survey showed that for the recreation category, only spending on entertainment subscription services like Netflix improved in the period. Supermarket Food staples purchases improved, a net of 15% of respondents said while the other items like takeaway food, cigarettes, cafe and alcohol declined.
With the economic consequences of the new coronavirus still being felt, Nigerians are prioritizing their spend on essentials like food and utilities and shunning ‘luxuries’ like clothing and takeaway food, CT noted. Internet/wifi, Mobile data plan, Utilities, Rent Mortgage, Gas/petrol/diesel/ Fuel spending went up in the period.
Roughly 56% of pollsters say international brands have the right amount of presence or should increase their presence in the country, while 40% voted for the smaller presence of foreign brands.
For businesses in the country, Nigerians believe priorities should be more of social responsibility (social purpose, ethical behaviour, environmentally sustainable) than Economic Growth (making profit, creating jobs, tax contributions to the economy.)
The pollsters also believe Germany not UK should be Nigeria’s third-biggest partners while India should be 7th, allowing UK occupancy 4th spot.
Even though online shopping is stress-free and convenient, Nigerians are worried product description would not match actual deliveries (56%) and about Security or Fraud risk (18%), and Delays in delivery (18%).
Concerns that items may be more expensive were only shared by 4% while 1% complained about poor internet.
Nigerians believe that the education sector has the most urgent need for investment ahead of Manufacturing, Renewable energy, Infrastructure (Road and Rail etc.), and Technology.
The vote might have been informed by the inability of students across all levels to continue learning due to social-distancing rules and increasing cases of the Covid-19 in the country.