Revolutionizing the concept of online shopping through quality SME products
7th March 2017, Dubai, United Arab Emirates: Souqplace.com, the first Emirati online marketplace, connecting quality SMEs and artisan products to consumers, during a press meet held on Tuesday, 7th March 2017 shared insights on e-commerce and consumer shopping trends, in the UAE.
Backed by the Emirati entrepreneur extraordinaire, Ahmed BinSalem Al Dhaheri, Chairman, Virtual Dusk, Souqplace.com aims at providing a platform to the blooming SME space of the UAE to connect with the larger audience and in turn, aims at providing the best products at the most competitive price to the customers.
Tony N. Al Saiegh, Executive Director, Virtual Dusk, holding company of Souqplace.com introduced the concept behind establishing the online marketplace. The ideal objective of Souqplace.com is to make sure they connect talented SMEs to the target audience efficiently and effectively. The brand is focused towards offering only qualitative products to its customers.
Speaking on the e-commerce trends, Tony mentioned, “In the past few years, there has been a great shift towards e-commerce in the UAE. Internet spending in the Middle East is booming due to easy access and availability of brands. The year 2016 witnessed the growth of online retail in the UAE market. E-commerce already is a huge trend and in future we will have businesses adapting to this online shopping revolution. Currently, the total value of e-commerce in the UAE is estimated at $2.5 billion (Dh9.2 billion), but this is expected to speed up and generate new businesses and job opportunities. The region is poised for social change, and hence we are on a go to innovating exciting ways to attract the audience.'
He further added, “Retail is a business that will not see a decrease, but will surely see a lateral move from traditional retail to online shops. In 2017, we can expect newer innovations in the way people shop and we can hope to see more and more small businesses acknowledging the impact of going online to reach a wider audience.'
What is interesting is that 2017 will see services and talent sales online, 3D and VR technology, rise in Seller-Buyer communication, retail smart shops and smart shopping experience online.
Souqplace.com started operations in late 2015 and as any start-up; they are at an initial phase of creating desired brand awareness and winning the trust of customers, both on the buyer and seller sides. On an average, Souqplace.com notices traffic of 250 visitors on a normal day and during campaigns, it increases up to a 1000 users per day.
60% of the shops, out of the 350 shops associated with Souqplace.com are those of talented SME’s and individuals. Out of these, 70 % are operated by females and 30% by males.
On the huge number of sellers being women, he said, “It is absolutely amazing to see such a large number of women taking on entrepreneurship. There are incredible products made by them that are loved by a lot of our customers. Some make products part-time and have a full time job and some are home makers who want to fulfill their hobby. We have highly talented woman who are extremely well known for creating Abayas whereas as few others for creating beautiful heels. ”
In such a short span, Souqplace.com has been able to showcase the efforts by the SME's associated with them. The talent the market holds is immense and the brand has just touched the surface. In the years to come, Souqplace.com aims at becoming the go-to destination for customers to shop for niche products that would be hard to find elsewhere.