The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated changes in the UAE’s e-commerce industry, following an increase in online shopping and digital payments.
During a recent digital forum, Amazon, Visa and talabat have confirmed that the pandemic is emerging as a catalyst for companies to change the way they operate their e-commerce businesses, as consumers rethink the way they shop online amid health and safety concerns.
“At Amazon, we’re constantly innovating to ensure that we are supporting our employees, our customers, sellers and our communities as effectively as possible. But nothing is more important than the health and wellbeing of our employees, which is why we are doing everything we can to keep them as safe as possible. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Amazon has implemented more than 150 significant process changes to support our teams and customers. These measures include increased cleaning at all facilities, maintaining social distance in our fulfilment centres and deliveries that can be left unattended, deliveries placed on the doorstep with associates maintaining a safe distance and removing requirements for customer signatures at the time of delivery. The pick-up process of returned items also follows these same measures,” said Anthony Haddad, chief of staff, Amazon MENA.
Commenting on the rise in online shopping and contactless payments, Hadi Raad, vice president & regional head of digital solutions at Visa, added, “COVID-19 has accelerated the shift from cash to digital payment methods. Even in face-to-face interactions between customers and vendors, mobile and contactless payments are becoming the norm as people move away from cash-based transactions. Moreover, the share of e-commerce is growing faster. Our COVID-19 CEMEA Impact Tracker found that during the pandemic, many consumers in the UAE started shopping online for the first time, primarily for essentials. Two-thirds of UAE consumers (68%) surveyed say that COVID-19 led to their first online grocery purchase, while 70% have made their first online purchase from pharmacies. Overall, the report points to a shift to online commerce, with cash transactions being replaced by digital payments.”
However, Raad believes more can be done globally to facilitate the shift towards a cashless society and create a seamless user experience across all digital touchpoints. “Friction can be eliminated from the user experience when it comes to payments and logistics is always a work in progress. The end-to-end process from card information registration to a transaction can be made more hassle-free and convenient. We are doing that globally by enabling a new click to pay experience that eliminates passwords and the need to manually type in too many card details that usually tend to lead to cart abandonment.”
Meanwhile, Visa has also launched it’s Where You Shop Matters’ campaign to encourage consumers to support small businesses that are adversely affected by the pandemic.
Online food ordering platform talabat saw a 24% increase in online payments versus cash on delivery in the UAE during the lockdown. “It’s no surprise to see that COVID-19 has impacted consumer buying habits, with the share of online transactions pushed up as a result. Such outcomes clearly suggest that consumers are flexible. All they need is a service provider to offer differentiated payment options and give them the assurance that online and contactless payments are safe, hassle-free and ensure a positive customer experience,” stated Wassim Makarem, vice president of regional markets and dark stores at talabat.
Words by Farimah Moeini, Snapchat Head of Industry – Retail and Travel TheJuly 5, 2021 | By RetailME Bureau
Snapchat has been betting big on Augmented Reality’s (AR) retail future consideringJune 22, 2021 | By Jibran Chouguley
Union Coop, a consumer cooperative in the UAE, revealed that 78% of
Union Coop has opened its 23rd branch within the UAE in Jumeirah
Nando’s has revealed their revamped Sheikh Zayed Road outlet where newcomers and
UAE-based Al Maya Group announced that it will be boosting import of
UAE-based grocery retail chain, Grandiose has opened its first hypermarket in Abu
UAE-based Carrefour announced its theme and plans for Ramadan 2021. The brand
Locally owned supermarket Spinneys celebrates 60 years of doing business in the
UAE-based Carrefour will become the first retailer in the region to offer new levels
The Organic Farmers’ Market is back in Bay Avenue for its 12th
UAE-based Lulu Group recently inaugurated its first-ever all-female staff store in Jeddah,
Jones the Grocer, the gourmet grocer and cheese retailer launches the Jones
The Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development in Saudi Arabia has
Extravagant, conceptual, great food and views are some of the ways that
Abu Dhabi’s state investment company ADQ is in talks to invest about $500 million
The once powerful department stores that anchored malls and streets around the
Who isn’t a sucker for discounts? Customers today are spoiled for choice
The various e-commerce and virtual retail stores that cater to different product
A private helicopter carrying the chairman and managing director of Lulu Group,
Retailers in the Middle East are making strides in their multichannel offerings,
Tighter restrictions on hotels, restaurants, shopping malls and entertainment venues on account of
All hotels and restaurants have been directed to temporarily hold entertainment activities
The new Dubai Gold Souk is “very much on track”, according to
Gone are the days of traditional brick-and-mortar as well as purely e-commerce