The global situation is rapidly changing. The number of people deemed safe to gather in a single place has dwindled from thousands, to hundreds, to five. Restaurants, bars, movie theaters, and gyms in major cities worldwide, including cities in the UAE, have temporarily closed or shutted down. Meanwhile, many office workers are facing new challenges of working remotely full time.
Essentially, people are coming to terms with the realities of our current interconnected world and how difficult it is to stay connected with one another. To say that we are living in unprecedented times feels like an understatement.
The COVID-19 Impact on Ecommerce in the UAE
In this scenario, digital has become the new normal. COVID-19 is boosting the UAE ecommerce business as consumers change their shopping behaviour by opting to buy online rather than shopping at physical stores. A brand acknowledging the need for ecommerce is Emaar Malls, a leading real estate development company in the United Arab Emirates that owns Dubai Mall. They have launched a virtual store to allow Dubai Mall retailers to sell their products online on noon.com, providing flexibility for customers in the UAE to shop from their preferred brands.
Now customers can head to their favourite shops online as part of the initiative that aims to support both retailers and the community. It promises to serve as a “free, safe, cash-less and convenient” service, which will run daily and help lessen the unprecedented challenges retailers are facing during COVID-19.
“Unprecedented challenges call for innovative, collaborative, and bold measures,” said an Emaar spokesperson. “
The Covid-19 situation and its impact on the global economy is a sign for ecommerce businesses to rally their strengths and identify new measures and strategies to maintain business continuity during social and economic hardships. The Dubai Mall virtual store will allow retailers to continue offering their products while also factoring the need for social distancing. Overall, the future of ecommerce in the UAE looks promising as more businesses move online to meet customer expectations and changing shopping behaviours.
Changes in Revenue Across Ecommerce
As people have embraced social distancing as a way to reduce the spread of the pandemic, there has been a massive decline in brick-and-mortar retail. Online shopping has increased at an unimaginable rate as people turn to ecommerce to purchase items they might have otherwise purchased in person.
This is especially true for online sellers of household goods and groceries. Retails like JD.com, China’s largest online retailer, have seen sales of common household staples quadruple over the same period last year. Moreover, a survey by Search Engine Land found that people are spending on average 10-30% more online.
While the world is reeling from the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic, businesses need to adapt to the rise of online shopping and changing customer expectations. Ecommerce stores are in a position to be able to capitalize on this, but only if they can be found online by customers in the first place.
In these uncertain times, there are various alternatives your business can consider in order to thrive that will likely take a slightly different mindset and approach. One way to do so is by transitioning your physical store online or starting your eCommerce business.
We at Creative971 offer services to businesses that would like to expand as a structured eCommerce business. We work with Plus partners like VL OMNI who look after your back-end operations to seamlessly unify your operations and processes.
Are you a local or international brand in the Middle East looking to move online fast and easy?
We work with aspiring brands, providing them a complete solution to start and run their ecommerce business. From strategy to building of a website, to ongoing optimization, we’ve got you covered with the utmost care & highest quality to help your business in the Middle East reach your goals and grow online.
About Creative 971
Creative971 is a Dubai based professional agency that creates cutting-edge websites for innovative retail brands on Shopify and Shopify Plus within the Middle East.