The Dubai Chamber of Commerce estimates that the average annual growth rate of online sales in the country is 23%. According to their forecast, this growth will continue, although the rate is expected to drop to 15% by 2025. Investment in digital marketing has been increasing by an average of 25.9% year over year.Analysts say 78% of MENA shoppers use social media to select and purchase products. In the coming years, the Paid Social segment in the region will be on the rise, as will the number of social commerce services.
The volume of the advertising market in the MENA region exceeded $5 billion in 2021, and the digital advertising market has been experiencing strong growth — the expenses on digital advertising increased by 84% in 2021, and the volume of this segment has almost matched the volume of offline advertising. At the same time, 75% of digital advertising budgets go to Google and Facebook. Audience interest and activity are shifting to social networks. That’s where 78% of customers find information about products and sellers.What’s unique about media consumption in the region is the extremely high level of Internet penetration, including mobile. For example, 99% of the residents of the UAE are active Internet users. And 98.9% use social netwrks constantly, with 92.5% doing so daily. On average, each Emirati resident spends up to 7 hours online, including 3 hours on social networks.
Companies promoting products or services in this region should consider presence on social networks as a key marketing activity.
An important factor is the region’s demographics: 98% of those living in the UAE are expatriates from India, Pakistan, the United Kingdom, and elsewhere. The combination of a strong traditional Arab culture with a variety of expatriate cultures impacts the specifics of the advertising market. Marketers must take into account the diversity of media consumption and content perception.
The E-promo experts also highlighted several key trends in the e-commerce segment of the market in the Middle East:
- UAE’s booming e-commerce sector, resulting in increased advertising spend in retail, FMCG, electronics, and other categories;
- Increased e-commerce investment from around the world;
- Shoppers are willing to buy more categories of goods online;
- In the next few years, the non-food express delivery segment will continue to grow, and self-delivery from delivery points and supermarkets (click & collect) will gain in popularity;
- A variety of social commerce services, such as video shopping platforms, will be increasingly popular in the future;
- In 2023–2024, the marketplace segment will be developing dynamically: new players will enter the market and existing players (Desertcart, Noon, Amazon, LuLu) will increase their online presence.
Numerous benefits and favorable economic conditions for entrepreneurs attract a large influx of entrepreneurs from all over the globe. According to experts, local e-commerce will actively grow for several years: The volume of the e-commerce market in the UAE in 2021 was $5 billion and will grow
to $8 billion by 2025. The
experience of E-Promo Group shows that the success of promotion in new markets depends on the understanding of local specificities in terms of advertising assets and media consumption.“At E-Promo Group, we understand the importance of successfully localizing a promotional strategy when entering foreign markets, based on the company’s experience and that of our clients. Our team has prepared and published this report to help marketers, founders, and product managers take into account the important characteristics of the MENA region (and the UAE in particular) when launching products and relocating businesses,” — says Asya Tikhomolova, International Commercial Director of E-Promo Group.
Detailed information on the digital advertising market and dynamics in MENA, as well as the state and prospects of e-commerce in the region, is available in the full version of the report. E-Promo’s experts offer many recommendations for companies planning to enter the Middle East market based on the information gathered and the analysis of media consumption characteristics.You can find the report at our website