More and more UAE Nationals rely on the Internet to shop and do business online. Ecommerce has completely changed the way traditional organizations do business and has enabled them to reach a global market. This of course has involved a change in business processes as well as in transactions modalities.
UAE’s Online Shopping now accounts for over 21 per cent of all retail sales, reports Gulf News Retail. These finding are according to Payfort’s ‘State of Payments in the Arab World’ report that covers seven countries in the region. What’s learnt is that “Consumers in the UAE are the region’s biggest spenders online, with the value of internet transactions reaching billions of dirhams in just one year.” In fact, $12.4 billion (Dh45.54 billion) in 2016. Online retail sales in the country are projected to be even higher this year.
As many as 60 per cent of UAE Internet Shoppers have engaged in ecommerce online with cross-border purchases, tells Go-Gulf.ae. Internet shopping provides consumers with more options on where to shop and find the choice of goods at best value for their money. Many online retailers feature coupon/deal site offers. However, concerns around the safety of online transactions are on the rise, as retailers collect personal data and consumers fear how the info will be used or even sold to third-parties.
Trust is now one of the biggest issues for online retailers in the region. During a consumer survey by Statista.com, it was found that over 20 percent of consumers in the United Arab Emirates avoided online shopping because of security concerns. Consumers who want to shop on the internet are in fear of fraudulent online transactions and for the safety of payments.
Online shoppers also want privacy transparency when retailers store personal and payment details. They don’t want this information stored unless kept safe by the retailer who must reassure customers that their data is in safe hands. Online retailers need to prove they are prepared to handle personal and financial information with the proper confidentiality and using technical safeguards like PGP and SSL encryption for their e-commerce infrastructure. Security is the single most reassuring element in keeping a loyal customer base for years to come, even more than competitive prices and customer service.
In an increasingly competitive environment, with a lot of choice for consumers in and out of country, businesses already doing ecommerce or looking to do business online need to keep abreast with the latest trends and technologies in the realm of data privacy and secure digital payment solutions (credit cards, e-cash, e-checks, foreign monies and Bitcoins). Many can plan to attend Seamless Middle East 2018 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre to learn more about what business leaders and entrepreneurs from across payments, ecommerce and retail are doing to thrive in this new world of connected commerce. At the event they will be able to discover strategies and technologies, as well as the next innovations for their business and make connections that will inspire their establishment, says Terrapinn Holdings Ltd, the event organizer.