In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), nearly 60% (59.2%) of shoppers surveyed for the PYMNTS 2022 Global Digital Shopping Index said they had used their smartphone at some point during their in-store shopping journey.
Read the report: Global Digital Purchasing Index 2022 – SMB Edition
When extrapolated to the entire UAE population, the research suggests that around 882,000 Emirati consumers use their smartphones to shop in-store, a higher share than in any of the other five countries. studied – Australia, Brazil, Mexico, United States United Kingdom (UK) and United States (USA).
The largest number of these shoppers (24.8%) said they used their smartphone to research product information, while others used it to compare prices (24.7%), build credit ( 20.7%) and looking for deals and discounts (19.9%).
Read more: Merchants bring context to commerce with one click via smartphones
A key takeaway from the report is that adopting multi-channel shopping capabilities and hybrid order fulfillment models is an increasingly important retail strategy in all of the countries surveyed.
For example, across the six markets surveyed, 57% of merchants said they allow customers to pick up their online purchases from in-store kiosks, an increase of 14% between 2020 and 2021.
See also: 30% of UAE SME customers pay online using digital wallets, the highest rate in a study of 6 countries
For the United Arab Emirates, which has some of the largest malls in the world and a retail market valued at $55 billion in 2019, technology has been a way for retailers to increase brick-and-mortar sales and to extract maximum value from customers, with the country being an early adopter of shopping apps that help consumers find exactly what they are looking for and pay the best price for it.
These include the official Visit Dubai app developed by the Department of Tourism and Trade Marketing, which functions as an interactive guide and source of information for tourists looking to navigate the extensive commercial offering and variety of Dubai.
Related: UAE-based SMEs generate 46% of sales on digital platforms, the lowest in a study of 6 countries
Other hybrid retail solutions include a range of custom apps developed by local malls such as Mall of the Emirates, Dubai Hills Mall and Dubai Mall to enhance the shopping experience and offer apps purpose-built retail spaces with features ranging from exclusive offers and rewards to mobile shopping, pay-by-phone parking options, maps and event guides.
Overall, data from the Global Digital Shopping Index 2022 indicates that the digital approach to retail is more than just a pandemic hangover, given the growing trend in countries for digital shopping of first, whether it’s e-commerce or a smartphone. in-store experiences.
If other countries want to learn from the thriving retail sector in the UAE, they must recognize that while e-commerce represents an increasingly important aspect of retail strategy in today’s digital landscape Today, that’s not the complete picture and brick-and-mortar stores still play a vital role in driving retail growth.
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