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Connected Consumer Survey 2016: mobile churn and customer satisfaction in Sub-Saharan Africa

Connected Consumer Survey 2016: mobile churn and customer satisfaction in Sub-Saharan Africa

Market Study
Published: January 2017
Pages: 35 slides
Research from: Analysys Mason
Sector: Mobile

From: GBP 3845.00
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This report focuses on aspects of Analysys Mason’s Connected Consumer Survey hat relate to the behaviour, preferences and plans of smartphone users in the Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) region. In particular, it focuses on respondents’ satisfaction with their mobile services. The survey was conducted in association with On Device Research.


Survey data coverage

The research was conducted in August and September 2016. The survey groups were chosen to be representative of the mobile-Internet population in the region. We set quotas on age, gender, employment, and regional demographics to that effect. There was a minimum of 1000 respondents per country, and 4000 respondents in the region.


Geographical coverage




South Africa



Who should read this report


§Operator-based strategy executives and marketing managers who are interested in understanding consumer market trends, the changing role of data services and the impact on customer satisfaction of various approaches to pricing.

§Market intelligence and research executives in service providers that are responsible for understanding end-user trends and supporting business units in identifying and addressing new opportunities.

§Equipment/device manufacturers and software providers that want to identify end-user trends in service and device usage and help their operator customers to improve their ability to address market opportunities.



Key Questions answered in this report

§How do churn levels vary between countries and operators? What factors seem to affect respondents’ decisions to churn? What are churners looking for in their next tariff?

§What is the Net Promoter Score (NPS) of different operators? What seems to affect it? How do operators perform in different parts of the country and what demographics are they strong in?

§How does data consumption correlate with customer satisfaction? How do different data pricing strategies affect customer experience and satisfaction?


Churn levels are relatively low in Sub-Sahara Africa


Relatively low churn can signal satisfaction with operators, but

may also indicate that consumers feel they have few choices.

In our survey, country-level intention to churn ranged from 7% to

11%: relatively low rates compared to other countries. For

example, in the Middle East and North Africa region, intention to

churn with 6 months was above 15% on average.1 Actual churn

levels are typically much lower than stated intention to churn:

many customers will remain with their provider despite being


Over half of the respondents in SSA said that they plan to remain

on the same tariff. This suggests a relatively inert market, with

relatively low levels of competition. Many customers will feel that

they have little choice between service providers; operators have

regional strengths and do not necessarily compete aggressively


Another factor that depresses the intended churn rate is the

prevalence in the region of multiple SIMs. In Nigeria for example,

the average mobile user has between two and three SIMs.

Customers spread their usage across service providers to take

advantage of lower on-net call rates, cheap offers and additional

services. Customers can increase or decrease their reliance on

different operators without churning.



Operators in SSA have relatively high NPSs, particularly the smaller operators


Respondents were asked to rate how likely they were to recommend their mobile operators, on a scale from 0 (not at all likely) to 10 (definitely). The NPS is calculated by subtracting the percentage of subscribers who rated the operator 6 or below, from the percentage that rated it 9 or 10; the higher the score, the better.

Scores are relatively high when compared to other regions. For example, NPSs below –20 are common for major operators in the MENA region. Most of the major operators in SSA scored between–20 and +20. Smaller operators generally performed well in the region, despite mixed results on churn metrics. This is because they typically have a smaller and better-defined customer base whose needs they understand and address.


§This is most evident in Nigeria, where operators’ NPSs are aligned with their market share: the smaller the operator, the higher the NPS.

§Vodacom in South Africa performs exceptionally well for a market leader.


It is important to note that operators’ performance on churn metrics and NPS do not map directly: NPS is a multi-dimensional metric. When filtered according to specific dimensions, NPS can be very revealing. The next sections of the report examine two of the main dimensions: network coverage and performance, and pricing and value for money (especially mobile data).

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