Adyen, a leading global financial technology platform, has released new research indicating that by adopting a unified commerce approach and eliminating isolated operations, retailers could enhance loyalty among 69% of UAE shoppers.
The research reveals that over half of UAE shoppers desire a flexible shopping experience that includes their preferred payment methods, options for online purchase with in-store returns, and the ability to order out-of-stock items for direct home delivery.
To conduct this study, Adyen enlisted the services of Opinium LLP to survey 1,000 UAE consumers out of a global sample of 36,000, as well as Censuswide to survey 500 UAE merchants out of a global sample of 12,000. The objective was to examine the impact of recent trends on businesses worldwide, with a particular focus on the UAE market. The research explores changes in consumer behavior across different markets and investigates the preferences of UAE shoppers, alongside the current performance of retailers. Additionally, economic modeling conducted by the Cebr demonstrates how unified commerce, which integrates online and offline payments into a single system, fosters increased resilience for retailers in today’s demanding and competitive retail landscape.
The overwhelming majority 80% of UAE consumers globally said they spend more time searching for the best deals and prices, while almost one third 30% wait for big calendar moments like Black Friday before making a purchase. In response, 52% of UAE merchants believe the impact of inflation is such that they need to offer discounts to consumers year-round.
The research found that in face of the rising cost of living personalisation and loyalty have become increasingly important. 78% of UAE consumers want to see more discounting at retailers they shop with and 67% say they want businesses to remember their preferences and previous shopping experiences so that browsing is more tailored. UAE Retailers are finding it hard to deliver on this, with 58% suggesting it’s now harder to categorise customers.
The tech advantage
69% of UAE consumers say that they’d be more loyal to retailers that let them buy online and return in-store, and nearly two-thirds 64% suggested they’d have better shopping experiences if a business enables them to shop in store and finish online or vice versa.
Further, when consumers were asked about how technology makes them feel when shopping in-store, the result is overwhelmingly positive. Little less than half 43% said they were happier because shopping was quicker, and slightly more than one-third 36% said they would visit a store more frequently as a result of its technology implementation.
UAE retailers are recognizing the significance of connecting all sales channels. In fact, this region is familiar with unified commerce, as 50% of retailers have already begun investing in this strategy in the past year, and 45% are considering its implementation.
“We have always recognized the potential of unified commerce for businesses and its ability to elevate the shoppers’ experience. It’s great to witness that in the UAE, over half of the retailers have also acknowledged its potential and chosen to invest in it,” said Sander Maertens, Head of the Middle East. “And despite the significant changes in consumer behaviour over recent years, retailers who have embraced unified commerce will find it easier to navigate and adapt to these shifts.”
“Through Adyen’s financial technology platform, businesses leverage unified commerce, bringing together all payment data into a powerful system. This integrated approach provides valuable insights into customer behaviour, enabling organisations to meet their shopping expectations effectively. In the dynamic world of the retail sector, where speed is crucial, technology proves vital in building operational resilience amidst the ever-changing landscape.”
About the research
- 36,000 Adults across the UK, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Japan, India, Australia, Ireland, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Poland, Belgium, Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Sweden USA, Canada, Mexico, Brazil and UAE
- Research was conducted between 3rd – 17th February 2023
- 12,328 Merchants from the UK, Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, Australia, UAE, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Poland, Belgium, Netherlands, Brazil, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, USA, Canada, Malaysia, Mexico, Ireland and India (at least 500 business respondents in each country)
- Survey conducted between 06.02.2023 – 01.03.2023
- As an illustrative figure, Cebr’s analysis includes the total additional revenue that would be generated, by companies across the countries analysed in the survey which are not using each of certain types of technology (including unified commerce), if they were to use it and see the revenue growth uplift implied by the survey results.
- The calculation utilises the number of retail businesses in each country which do not use each of the five sales technologies analysed (which have a positive association with revenue growth) and the potential revenue uplift calculated using revenue growth rates and data on the average revenue for retail businesses in each of the countries analysed.
- The survey analysed 12,328 merchants from the UK, Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, Australia, UAE, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Poland, Belgium, Netherlands, Brazil, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, USA, Canada, Malaysia, Mexico, Ireland and India.
- OECD data on retail businesses was used to estimate total revenue and number of businesses in the sector for all of the countries aside from India, Mexico and the UAE. These statistics are based on data from 2020, aside from a few select statistics specified in the report.