Gulf Middle-east Region confronts simplicity in online shopping

"It is vitally important that organisations understand where their customers are most likely to be influenced along the path to purchase and ensure communications are kept simple and understandable." ---- Joumana Al Hage, Senior Strategic Planner, Cheil

Further to a study conducted, internet retailing ranks among the top five sector globally, but the middle-east region ranks at the 18th place. If the transaction process was much more straight-forward, then there would be more e-shoppers in the Middle-east Gulf region. Moreover, this would certainly help in increasing the spending lifestyle of each the online shoppers here.

A recent survey conducted by Siegel + Gale Consultancy, the marketing consultancy has revealed that there would be more likely recommendations of a brand if it provides a simpler experience and communication. Therefore, the web retailing ranks at the 18th place amount other key sectors. This region has seen a considerable increase in the e-commerce related ventures in the last three years. However we will have to see how many have actually turned the corner from a financial perspective.

It has been seen that the take-up rates among consumers are particularly high in UAE and Saudi Arabia compared to the other regional markets. There are also concerns of the online vendors to have been able to assuage the concerns over the security of the shoppers data and will need to do more to make the transactions easier.

"Internet retail in the Middle East is not making life any easier – this should be a primary tenant for any online vendor brand experience," said Liana Dinghile, Siegel+Gale’s Director of strategy.

Complexity is rife throughout the supply chain process. And our continuous developing infrastructure and technologies are relying on human interaction with the browsers. And this is resulting in the loss of trust in the e-commerce sector. As a result, the promise is not being fulfilled by the experience. So, while internet retailing ranks is one among the top five sectors globally, in the Gulf middle-east region, it is languishing in the 18th place.

Joumana at Cheil said that the companies who invest heavily, polishing the outside of their brand, without a consideration for the internal process, set themselves up for a fall.

Companies need to keep vigil and study where their customers are most likely to be influenced along the path to purchase using e-commerce. And it is only important to ensure communications are kept simple and understandable. For this, the best option would be to localize the contents where ever possible. The online ventures in this gulf middle-east region have done better by this localization.

"As internet penetration is so high in the middle-east, online brands have adapted their service by offering the same product localized for an Arabic audience," said Dinghile.

"Those that succeed are those that make the lives of consumers easier by customizing where very possible; from paying bills online to booking hotels with a click of a button. The challenge for brands is to innovate and improve a customer’s life without complicating the experience. The same principle applies across the world."

Copyright ©