E-commerce in Middle East grows fast

E-commerce in Middle East grows fast

Middle Eastern e-commerce is on the rise and it is expected that the online turnover will grow from 9 billion euro to 15 billion euro in 2015.

Region has 30 million online customers

The Middle East, with countries like Egypt, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, currently has some 30 million online customers, according to a Payfort study. A lot of customers live in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, partly because both emirates have a lot of foreign employees with high wages.

 

Almost 7 out of 10 online shoppers claim the favourable prices are a reason to shop online, while 56 % believes the ease of use is also a benefit. Plane tickets, travel arrangements and digital products are the most popular online purchases.

 

Remarkable is that mostly young people buy things online. The Egyptian-focused part of the study shows that 75 % of all purchases are done by people in their twenties or thirties. 70 % of online shoppers is male.

 

With an increasing amount of people having internet access in the Middle East, the future seems bright. Only 28 million had access in 2004, but ten years later, that number rose to 141 million.

 

Still obstacles in the way

There are still a few issues to be dealt with, as the number of Middle Eastern e-commerce companies is still very low. There are a few regional success stories, like Souq.com.

 

A lot of deliveries are still "cash on delivery", with 80 % having to be paid on arrival, which raises prices. It also takes longer before the money has been transferred as more than 80 % of people in the Arabic world does not have a bank account.

 

More involved parties have to arrive to stimulate e-commerce in the region, but Payfort also believes payment methods have to change.

Questions or comments? Please feel free to contact the editors


Rakuten bridges gap to Japanese online consumer

30/10/2017

In Alibaba and Amazon’s shadow, Japanese Rakuten Ichiba is quickly developing. Several Western chains are using the platform to sell their products to Japanese online consumers.

Whole Foods contributes to Amazon's enormous turnover increase

27/10/2017

American Amazon’s third quarter turnover grew a lot once more, partially thanks to Whole Foods. This was the first time the chain’s turnover was added to Amazon’s overall turnover.

More than half of American families subscribed at Amazon

21/10/2017

An astonishing ninety million Americans have joined Amazon’s subscription program, Amazon Prime. Considering there are 126 million families in the United States, it is clear that Amazon has a tight grip on its home territory. What can Europe learn from this?

Safe.Shop is new global eCommerce trust mark

16/10/2017

Safe.Shop is the world’s first global eCommerce trust mark. Currently, only twelve countries signed up, but that number should increase in the future.

Fashion platform About You launches in the Netherlands and Belgium

11/10/2017

German fashion web shop About You, the second largest online European fashion retailer, officially launched in Belgium and the Netherlands following an unofficial launch in the Netherlands some time ago.

Alibaba invests billions in physical retail

28/08/2017

Over the past two years, Chinese eCommerce giant Alibaba has spent nearly seven billion euro in physical retail. Its Hema Xiansheng chain already has thirteen supermarkets and it acquired luxury department store Intime from the government in January.

Back to top