United Arab Emirates – Retail sales are expected to pick up during the holy month of Ramadan as UAE residents increasingly turn to online channels to stock up on essentials as well as gifts for family and friends. their friends before the Eid break.
Experts have identified several retail trends that will accelerate in the run-up to the holidays, such as shopping for groceries online, trying new brands and buying gift items.
Richard Nicoll, director of strategy and capabilities at Liquid Retail, noted that with 60% of online shoppers planning to increase their spending across all sectors this Ramadan, it’s critical that retailers understand that consumers are not spending not just more during Ramadan; they spend differently.
“The holy month brings with it flexible working hours and the ability to get together with friends and family, leaving consumers with more time and the need to shop,” he said. “This season is a unique time for brands to innovate and capitalize on this opportunity by providing shoppers with profitable and convenient offers such as buy-one-free offers, discounted prices on bulk items and coupons. purchase that will not only drive sales and engagement this month, but encourage greater long-term brand loyalty.”
According to a recent YouGov survey, 53% of shoppers said they spend more, 40% are looking for deals, and 49% of consumers prefer discounts during Ramadan. YouGov’s latest survey of UAE respondents’ Ramadan behavior also found that 30% plan to shop more online this Ramadan, while 61% plan to shop in-store this Ramadan.
Nicoll added that grocery e-commerce is now well established and, in many cases, the preferred way to shop. “The new grocery e-commerce convenience and experience aligned with deals on popular Ramadan favorite brands likely means this is the most successful Ramadan for e-commerce platforms investing dollars. to persuade shoppers to shop online – Noon Ramadan Delivered is an example.
“We expect to see marketers harness the power of shopper behavior and continue to seek increased online sales during Ramadan,” he added. “To meet the needs of today’s customers and attract more of them this Ramadan, brands need to create a holistic omnichannel retail strategy that covers all offline and online touchpoints and ensures a seamless experience. seamless shopping, anywhere, anytime.”
Facebook IQ, the insights and research division of Meta, in partnership with YouGov, also unveiled the results of a study conducted during Ramadan 2021, which showed that around 64% of UAE shoppers are enthusiastic to the idea of trying new foreign brands and products. Additionally, 55% of shoppers are more likely to shop abroad during Ramadan and Eid if ads focus on these key times.
Fares Akkad, regional manager for the Mena region at Meta, said: “Gifts and shopping are a big part of the Ramadan moment. Changing daily habits leave shoppers more open than usual to discovering new brands and products. This creates a unique opportunity for companies to reach cross-border shoppers looking to discover products they’ll love – and meta-technology can help make those connections.
Research has shown that people buy overseas for a variety of reasons, including to find a higher quality product, a product at a better price, or a product that is not available locally. About a third of people also buy from overseas retailers, while more than 70% make “unexpected discoveries” during Ramadan.
When shopping abroad during Ramadan, 62% of UAE shoppers believe it is important to see content in their local language, while 27% of shoppers agree they find content creators the most influencers during Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr, helping them discover new content and accounts they might like.
Research conducted by AdColony, in collaboration with GlobalWebIndex, also provided several insights into user behavior during Ramadan. While time spent on smartphones is increasing day by day, 44% of respondents spend 1-3 hours online on their smartphones. The most preferred time to play mobile games and shop online is during the daytime fast between 12 p.m. and 6 p.m. at 33% and 30% respectively.
The study found that 77% of participants will use their smartphone when shopping for Ramadan, while 67% say they will shop in-app. Additionally, 47% of respondents say they will shop after Iftar time. When analyzing industry-specific data, 45% of users in the UAE will visit stores to shop during Ramadan, while 46% will shop online and use delivery at residence.
Undeniable access to mobile advertising continues to stand out as the most important factor in consumer buying trends, with 66% of respondents saying they have already made purchases during Ramadan with their smartphones directly through mobile advertisements; and 84% said they would consider purchasing a product or service if the product featured in the ad appealed to them.
“One of the most important things a brand has to stand for to be successful is relevance – and that goes for Ramadan as well,” Nicoll said. “Brands must prioritize knowing their target audience and the items that have cultural value to them so they can streamline their efforts to deliver impactful retail experiences and reduce promotional noise.”
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