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UAE residents are large digital spenders: Report

UAE residents are large digital spenders: Report
15 May 2024 08:42

ALLAN JACOB (ABU DHABI)

Cash isn’t king in the UAE as residents turn in large numbers to online shopping, with a 140% monthly jump seen in digital purchases.

A report by Checkout.com released on Tuesday also points to 49% of UAE shoppers planning to ditch physical visits to supermarkets for the ease and convenience of digital shopping as confidence in secure e-commerce systems grows.

What’s interesting is that UAE consumers are also moving away from cash on delivery and prefer digital payment methods.

This shift is particularly pronounced in the UAE, where there’s been a “37% decrease in preference for cash-on-delivery over the last 48 months,” according to the report.

So what are digitally savvy residents buying online the most? Most consumers are transacting online for clothes and fashion accessories (56%); electronics and food/prepared meals come next at 53%, while 46% buy groceries online, said the report.

They are also opting for digital wallets, including Apple Pay and Google Pay, said the study, titled “The State of Digital Commerce in MENA 2024: A Tale of Rapid, Sustained Growth”, which added that growth rates have been rapid since 2020.

The report highlights a 23% rise in weekly online shoppers in the UAE, and a 10% increase in daily online shoppers, which is proof of the country’s sustained and systematic digital transformation across all sectors of the economy.

This is in consonance with growth at the MENA level, where digital shopping has risen a mind-boggling 658% since 2020, the report said, with consumers exuding enthusiasm about digitally procuring their supplies, clothes, and other accessories.

This increase in digital spending demonstrates the resilience and robustness of the economy, not just in the UAE, but across the region, said the report.

“People and businesses in the UAE are living in a transformative era of digital commerce.

This is not only characterised by a remarkable shift in preferences for digital payment methods, but a growing emphasis on payment security, leading to consumer trust,” said Remo Giovanni Abbondandolo, General Manager for MENA at Checkout.com.

He lauded the UAE’s embrace of “advanced infrastructure, platforms, and policies” as consumers (36%) expressed concerns about online security with the rise of digital scams, with the report saying that 35% of UAE residents have reported being victims of online payment fraud.

Shoppers, according to the report, are also sensitive when it comes to purchases online, and 29% switch to a competitor after a single failed payment.

“By prioritising both ease of use and robust security measures, businesses can instill trust and confidence in their payment systems, retain their customers, and ultimately enhance the overall customer experience, and their overall payment performance,” added Abbondandolo.

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