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How E-Commerce Has Skyrocketed Over The Past Year

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Richard Smith BSc (Hons), TEP

Richard Smith BSc (Hons), TEP

UAE Freezone and Residence Visa Expert

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How E-Commerce Has Skyrocketed Over The Past Year

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The global e-commerce market – already growing rapidly – has been booming over the past year like no other sector. The reason for this sudden uptick is clear enough: COVID-19.

The pandemic has forced many of us to rely on home deliveries. Once it is over and we are back to ‘normal’, many are unlikely to want to let go of this convenience and brick-and-mortar stores may struggle. But in reality, COVID-19 has only speeded up a trend that has been happening for years.


In the UAE, fintech and the promotion of the e-economy is at the forefront of the government’s strategy for growth. This means there are huge opportunities for startups here in many sectors. For example:

  • Retail:Probably the most popular sector for e-commerce entrepreneurs. According to a survey by Statista, global e-commerce retail sales are set to reach $6.54tr by 2023. In the UAE, we have already seen success stories from the likes of e-tailer Souq.com, which was taken over by global giant Amazon in 2017.
  • Food delivery:For those isolating at home during the pandemic, food delivery apps have been a lifeline the world over, and savvy businesses are already seeing the potential here. For example, UAE company Careem, originally a ride-hailing app, has since branched out to include a food deliver service called ‘Careem Now’.
  • E-learning:The past year has seen a growing interest in e-learning across all age groups as. The Ministry of Education has announced that a digital learning platform powered by AI will be implemented in all public schools in the UAE. And in the private sector, established UAE-based companies – such as Human Logic or New Horizons to name just two – are already geared up to meet the new demand. Whether it’s language apps, online lectures or more practical skills, there’s a real space in the market for innovative online learning providers.

Of course, the e-commerce market doesn’t stop at the e-tailers and service providers. As an entrepreneur, if you’re looking to benefit from this boom there are many ways to do that along the entire value chain. All the above sectors will need supplementary services to support them: whether that’s tech development, logistics provision, innovative packaging solutions or something else entirely, there will be a niche to suit your expertise.

With its excellent digital penetration, ever-improving logistics infrastructure and strong security measures in place for online transactions, the UAE is the perfect place to start your e-commerce journey.

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