The e-commerce market size in Kenya expanded by the expected estimate of 15%, with its revenues contributing to an overall growth rate of 8.7% in 2023, data from ecommerceDB (ECDB) – an e-commerce sector research and analytics firm – shows.
Further, it projects a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.7% between 2023 and 2027 and is poised to reach a market value of $2,662.8 million by 2027.
E-commerce is the exchange, buying, and selling of goods and services between two unconnected entities over the internet, and commercial transactions are via the Web.
As per the sector’s market prediction by ECDB, the increase seen in Kenya’s electronic commerce space is expected not to slow down soon because many companies are now shifting their business efforts to online environments as economies recover from the blow dealt by COVID-19, which forced teleworking.
The electronic payments or the e-payments industry involving business-to-business, consumer-to-business, and consumer-to-consumer online money transactions is foreseen to follow a similar trend with the rise of online shoppers.
Many internet-based vendors such as eBay, Amazon, Shopify, Netflix, and Alibaba, among many others, support payments from big e-processing networks like Visa, Mastercard, and American Express, but in Kenya, until not recently, thanks to Mpesa GlobalPay Virtual VISA Card, making online orders was a nightmare.
What is Mpesa GlobalPay?
Mpesa Global is a virtual card platform that supports secure payments when shopping online through a Visa-powered M-PESA GlobalPay virtual card following Safaricom’s partnership with Visa, a major electronic payment and financial technology firm.
“The world is yours” with the M-PESA GlobalPay virtual VISA card as it provides a safe, reliable, and convenient way for settling digital payments in the wake of credit card fraud and other cybercrime.
Unlike physical credit or debit cards, this Mpesa virtual card cannot be stolen from your wallet but is even more secure because its features prevent your personally identifiable information (PII) and financial data from being accessed by merchants and third-party sites, which can lead to fraud, data breach, and harassment.
Here is why: the M-PESA GlobalPay, like any other of its type, generates a virtual card with a unique and anonymous 16-digit card number used to identify your credit account or funding source and is entered when making payments, a CVV – a throwaway Card Verification Value for authorizing them with an expiration of 30-minutes following its generation. Additionally, it has PIN protection for transaction verification.
On the other hand, card numbers and sensitive CVVs are printed on plastic debit and credit cards, and when you use them to make e-payments on sketchy websites, it is risky as it can lead to loss.
Both physical and virtual cards have expiry dates, and M-PESA GlobalPay virtual VISA card expires after three years, but it is free to re-activate as it is to use.
That is roughly how the Mpesa GlobalPay online payment card works;
How to get started…
There are two ways you can get your Mpesa Global Pay virtual card and start making online payments when placing orders with internet merchants;
I. Via Mpesa app
1. To get started, head over to the Mpesa app and enter your PIN or pass the set biometrics to log in
2. Scroll down to the Financial Services section and tap on ‘GlobalPay’ to launch the mini-program
3. Enter your Mpesa PIN to proceed
4. Commit to ‘Opt In’ then enter your PIN again to activate your M-PESA GlobalPay virtual VISA card
5. Customize the look of your virtual card by choosing your preferred color and image, or jump directly to ‘Create Card’ to finalize its generation
6. Enter your PIN to finalize the changes
This is the easiest way of signing up for Mpesa Global service online, and you can now utilize the virtual Visa card for most online purchases. Here’s the second way of doing it;
II. Via USSD
Register for Mpesa GlobalPay for free by dialing USSD *840 or *334# on your phone and following the prompts. Note that for every registered ID, Safaricom issues only one virtual card, but you can switch between SIM cards after opting out of the service first on the primary line.
What are its spending limits?
If you want to pay with Mpesa Global, know that the M-PESA GlobalPay virtual VISA card has a preset spending limit. Its purchasing power depends on the current Mpesa maximum daily transaction value of Ksh500,000 but has a one-time payment of Ksh250,000 – however, the minimum amount will change based on the prevailing USD – KES rates, Safaricom says.
You cannot use the Mpesa GlobalPay virtual card to receive money, and doesn’t pay crypto, gambling, lotto, and other yet-to-be-authorized service providers.