- Tabby’s new “Ultimate Middle East Shopping Survey” reveals key insights into Middle East shoppers’ behaviours
- 60% of MENA online shoppers abandon purchases due to payment issues
- 45% of shoppers have discovered retail purchases through Social Media
- 78% of retail customers have waited to buy items online after seeing them in-store to compare prices between brands.
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, January 31, 2024: Tabby, the MENA’s leading shopping and financial services app, has conducted the largest shopping survey in the Middle East, providing retailers in the region with the most insightful, up-to-date data to inform their 2024 retail strategy and help them stay ahead of the retail landscape.
The research was conducted using a survey, examining over 7,500 shoppers across the UAE and Saudi Arabia on their retail habits and experiences. The survey includes expert opinions from retail leaders such as SQUATWOLF, Level Shoes, Bloomingdale's, and FACES.
The buying experience is almost as important as the product
The survey found that 30% of shoppers are exclusively loyal to brands that offer them a good shopping experience. It also revealed that customer loyalty schemes fail to achieve repeat sales, with only 7.7% of consumers saying that such schemes are one of the reasons they return to shop at the same brand again.
82% of shoppers found at least one frustration in the online shopping process, including website navigation, auto-payment options, and long checkout processes. Additionally, young shoppers aged 18–29 are twice as likely to get frustrated with slow e-commerce websites. For those hoping to attract Gen-Z shoppers, a good shopping experience is non-negotiable.
It’s also worth noting that female shoppers prioritise affordability over quality more than male shoppers.
Free shipping is key for Saudi shoppers
The research also indicated that 29% of Saudi shoppers are frustrated when retailers do not provide them with free shipping, compared to UAE whose shoppers scored 23%, indicating that free shipping is a key driver for shoppers in the region.
In-store and online, not in-store versus online
Based on the survey results, 78% of retail customers have opted to buy items online after seeing them in-store to compare prices between different sites. They also prefer shopping online but appreciate expert in-person advice and will still overall opt for a mix of shopping experiences. Online and in-store shopping experiences complement one another, as the data reveals that while 45% of buyers have purchased items through social media, 72% of shoppers find retail inspiration online and will likely know exactly what they want to buy in-store before going in-person shopping.
Shoppers are suspicious, so create stores that feel credible
According to the data gathered, 60% of buyers have abandoned a purchase due to payment issues, with young shoppers being more cautious about sharing their payment details. Thus, retailers are responsible for showing potential customers that their website is safe.
Hosam Arab, CEO and Co-Founder of Tabby, said: “In today’s competitive e-commerce landscape, information is key. We have launched our Middle East shopping survey to help retailers gain deeper insights into the needs and preferences of shoppers across the region. With such data-driven insights, we can create an e-commerce ecosystem that has the shared goal of giving shoppers the best shopping experience possible.”.
Tabby’s biggest-ever shopping survey underscores the company’s growing momentum in the retail and fintech industries and follows its latest announcement of securing $700 million in warehouse financing from J.P. Morgan, representing the largest asset-backed facility obtained by a fintech in the MENA region.