Consumers planning to buy "online" ... and others prefer direct shopping in stores

Outlets and "cooperatives" develop their electronic platforms to keep pace with demand during Ramadan

  • Consumers prefer direct purchase of fresh commodities such as meat, poultry, vegetables and fruits.

    Photography: Ashok Verma


Officials in sales outlets and cooperative societies stated that they are currently developing their electronic platforms to keep pace with consumer demand to purchase Ramadan supplies during the coming period, pointing out that the development aims to meet the needs of multiple groups of consumers, and their reliance on electronic shopping increased during the Corona pandemic, in addition to avoiding complaints that It appeared during the last Ramadan season, such as late delivery of orders.

They indicated to "Emirates Today" that it is expected that a part of consumers will buy their needs "online", while others still prefer to buy them directly from the outlets.

For their part, consumers confirmed that they are planning to buy "online" to avoid congestion before and during Ramadan, while others said that they will rely on direct purchases from outlets to compare prices and ensure the quality of goods.

Direct shopping

In detail, the consumer, Ayman Rafie, said that he “will depend on direct shopping for Ramadan supplies from sales outlets, with his family, because it is a celebration among families with the advent of the holy month, by searching for goods in outlets, and buying everything related to the needs of the month of Ramadan.”

The consumer, Baha Abdulaziz, added that he "prefers to buy Ramadan needs with his family directly from sales outlets, in order to compare their quality, and direct purchase is better in fresh goods, such as meat, poultry, vegetables and fruits."

The consumer, Adnan Khattab, considered that «the pandemic made him become aware of the benefits of buying (online) home supplies, especially with the spread of competition among the available sites, the increase in their number, and the services provided in them, and that he will not resort to buying directly from sales outlets except to buy goods. Which is preferred to buy from the store, such as vegetables and fruits ».

The consumer, Suha Ashraf, added that she «plans to buy (online) the requirements of the month of Ramadan, in order to avoid congestion in sales outlets, whether before or during the month of Ramadan, which is consistent with precautionary measures during the period of the Corona pandemic».

Meat and poultry

The consumer, Hoda Al-Ahmad, said that she will buy food, especially fresh, such as meat, poultry, vegetables, fruits, leaves and cheeses, from the outlets, due to the necessity to choose them according to specific requirements, and to ensure that they are fresh, with the possibility of purchasing the rest of the supplies through the outlets or "online" according to the price offers. .

The consumer, Ammar Tawfiq, added that he prefers to buy foodstuffs for the month of Ramadan, through the branches of sales outlets and associations, to check their quality and compare the different types on the ground, indicating that he buys other supplies, such as electrical appliances, clothes, perfumes and others "online".

And the consumer, Kamal Mahmoud, indicated that buying from outlets is a well-established tradition for many families in Ramadan, and a kind of ritual of the holy month, where shopping operations are carried out with the participation of a large number of family members, and indicated that he will resort to buying online in the event of a crowded outlet. For the purpose of purchasing specific commodities, such as clothing, perfumes, electrical appliances, phones and their accessories.

sale points

For his part, Chairman of the Consumer Cooperative Union and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Union Cooperative Society, Majid Rahma Al Shamsi, said that “many consumers prefer direct shopping during Ramadan, from the branches of sales outlets and cooperative societies,” explaining that despite the growth of electronic shopping, since last year Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, however, many consumers still prefer to shop directly from sales outlets in Ramadan, especially foodstuffs, to check their quality and compare the different brands and their prices in the outlets.

Al Shamsi explained that consumers are expected to resort to electronic shopping to buy non-food goods in general, such as clothes, household items, perfumes, electrical appliances and others, noting that outlets and associations have become more ready for online shopping compared to last Ramadan, which witnessed some complaints about the late arrival of goods. To consumers, especially since the Coronavirus pandemic imposed itself unexpectedly on the whole world, just as last Ramadan witnessed the reduction of shopping hours, and consumers ’concern about the availability of goods, indicating that the psychological factor plays a role that cannot be underestimated by consumers.

He stressed that sales outlets and delivery companies have learned a lot from the experience of the past year, and are ready to face the momentum of electronic shopping, as they have strengthened their technical and technological structure, and increased the number of their employees to play this role.

Online purchase

For his part, Deputy Director of the Abu Dhabi Cooperative Society for Operations, Abdullah Eid, said, “Consumers are expected to mix between purchasing directly through outlets and online purchases, and many consumers prefer to buy food, especially in Ramadan, from the outlet branches. To verify its quality, ”referring to consumers’ assurance of buying from outlets without congestion, especially with a large number of the country's population obtaining the vaccine and adhering to the precautionary measures to combat “Covid-19”.

Eid added that it is expected that the pace of buying "online" will increase for the rest of the various commodities, compared to previous years, indicating that the outlets and associations take several measures to facilitate and speed up the process of "online" purchases, so as not to delay consumer demands, stressing that the complaints witnessed last year The delay in the demands of some consumers was exceptional, given the severe anxiety that accompanied the emergence of the pandemic, and the restriction of shopping times in order to preserve public health.

Price comparison

In turn, Director of Institutional Communication Department, spokesperson for the Lulu Group of Commercial Centers, Nanda Kumar, said, “It is expected that shoppers will go shopping intensively from outlets directly during Ramadan, due to their desire to choose between different brands, and compare prices and compare them.” Adding that the next Ramadan is expected to witness a growth that will reach double in online shopping, compared to normal periods, pointing to the growth of electronic shopping, to unprecedented levels during last Ramadan, due to the Corona pandemic.


In the same context, the General Manager of Ajman Markets Cooperative Society, Sami Muhammad Shaban, said, “The association is preparing to keep pace with the preference of some consumers to buy (online) before and during the month of Ramadan, by developing a new platform for the association, which will be launched before the month of Ramadan.” Until «(the platform) is expected to include about 15 thousand products, which include all basic and consumer goods, and to meet the needs of different segments of consumers during the holy month».

He added that «(the association) will work to support the delivery of goods quickly, while providing discounts campaigns, whether directly at the outlet or through the electronic platform."

Expanded plans

In a related context, Abdul Hamid Al-Khashabi, the spokesperson for the centers of the “Aswaaq” group affiliated to the “Dubai Government Investment Corporation”, said that “(the group) has expanded plans to develop its e-commerce platform, by establishing centers dedicated to speeding up the delivery of orders and expanding the scope of delivery. To keep up with the trend of some consumers to buy the requirements of the Ramadan season through online platforms.

He added, "Last Ramadan witnessed a great demand for (online) shopping, which made the group focus on expanding e-commerce as one of the main trends in the retail trade sector, and it has been witnessing a growing demand for some time."

Purchase supplies

In turn, the Director of Marketing and Happiness Department at the Union Coop, Dr. Suhail Al-Bastaki, explained that “the (Corona) pandemic has raised consumers’ tendencies to rely on buying (online), which has been clearly demonstrated during the last period, ”pointing out that“ (the cooperative) It is working on implementing plans to prepare for the month of Ramadan, by increasing the availability of goods that suit the needs of consumers, and in a way that supports the options of shopping (online) or direct purchase.

He added that «consumers prefer to buy through electronic platforms, which has increased the competitiveness in the retail trade sector through electronic platforms, which has appeared remarkably in the markets during the recent period, through the direction of some famous platforms to e-commerce to expand the provision of sections for grocery, or from During the emergence of new platforms, whether independent or affiliated with outlets, the growth of demand in that sector kept pace, which in turn created multiple platforms, which were positively reflected by providing multiple alternatives and services to consumers, and competitiveness contributed to the increase in the development of the platforms and the expansion of providing multiple services.

A questionnaire

A consumer opinion poll, conducted by Emirates Today on the Twitter platform, about shopping for Ramadan purchases through online platforms, or through direct purchase from outlets, revealed that 23% of consumers prefer to shop through e-commerce platforms, while 77% of consumers confirmed their desire to buy directly from outlets before and during Ramadan.

High budget shopping during Ramadan

Retail expert Ibrahim Al-Bahr said, “The month of Ramadan is witnessing an increase in the budget of shopping for families in general, and thus purchases increase in large quantities, especially foodstuffs, and the average purchase at one time reaches about 1000 dirhams, and therefore the consumer wants to make sure of Quality of goods and compare it with other brands ».

Al-Bahar emphasized that “e-commerce is focused on non-food commodities in general, as well as on goods that the consumer accepts delayed arrival for several days,” pointing out in this regard that many outlets are still not fully ready yet for e-shopping operations, and some of them send The requests to consumers are late, compared to their access to them directly in the case of shopping from the outlet, and some resort to sending a single order in batches that take several days.

• The development aims to address the complaints that appeared during the last Ramadan season, such as late delivery of orders.

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