CGAP have released a very interesting
article this morning on customer activity rates for mobile money schemes which contains some condemning statistics for the industry. Of the 120 deployments that were live globally when the study was conducted only 11 had more than 200,000 active users,
and active is broadly (perhaps generously?) defined as one transaction within the last 90 days. Some other figures of note:
- Only 8% of signed-up customers were active in the survey
- 80% of those active in month 1 were not active by month 3
- The top 10% of agents had customer activity rates 40 times greater than the lowest 10%
- 44% of customers are using the service for just one activity, despite others being available
- Women are 40% more likely to use the service than men
This confirms that signing customers up in only half the battle. As written
previously, it is crucial that mobile money operators design their services around the needs of their intended customers. And the only way to know what your customers want is to speak to them directly. It might seem an obvious statement, but this needs
to be done up front as the initial customer experience will dictate whether they return to use the service again. Once the service is designed correctly then it must be marketed directly at those it is intended to serve.
The correct agent strategy is also key to success. What are the factors that determine why some agents have very high customer activity rates whilst others barely register any interest? When incentivising agents, it’s not just signing customers up that is
important, but encouraging activity rates is too. And as last week’s
blog suggests, making your service interoperable could also drive activity rates.
Low activity rates will mean that it will take mobile money services years to break even if at all. Designing the service correctly up front and marketing it at the right audience will be the difference success and failure.
Mobile Money Consulting