Tech

Ecommerce Scalability in the Wider Middle East and Northern African region:

‘An Indispensable Transformation’

Ecommerce scalability was one of the many learnings from the COVID-19 pandemic felt across the MENA region.

The MENA region has always boasted of a robust digital infrastructure. However, during the COVID-19 pandemic and at 98% digital penetration in 2020, the digital ecosystem of the MENA region especially of UAE; experienced grave loopholes in their online platforms.

The pandemic caused a paradigm shift in online shopping behaviour due to extensive lockdowns. With increasing numbers of online shoppers – occasionally crashing and disrupting the server—caused significant management problems and poor customer experience. The pandemic caused an enormous financial blow to the MENA region – known to be the ‘shopping destination’ of the world, as people become more cost-conscious.

However, as per reports from a global consultancy firm Kearney Middle East, 48% in the UAE and 69% of Millennials in Saudi Arabia are willing to go digital even after the pandemic ends. It indicates a permanent change in consumer behaviour leading to a call for immediate action to expand and optimize your online store for a smooth user experience; and to prevent slow website loading, frequent crashing, and security breach that are the major factors responsible for a depressed online brand value.

As the first step towards scalability, businesses must understand the importance of sustainable and powerful ecommerce and approach an expert in ecommerce solutions for upgrading their digital game. You can start by developing and working on the loopholes of your site and creating pillars like:

 

Ecommerce scalability

  •     User-friendly UI experience
  •     Speed
  •     and Trust

As they are the way forward in this digital revolution.

Among the four, scalability is arguably the most important. So, it’s time to discuss what it means and how beneficial it is for the future.

Ecommerce Scalability – A Necessity for the New Normal

Scalability refers to the ability to adapt to growing input without affecting efficiency. Ecommerce scalability increases the scope and strength of the online presence of a business. Whether light or heavy traffic, the platform delivers a similar high-quality experience to the consumer if it is scaled well.

With the growing shift in consumer behaviour and the rise in demand for online marketplaces, you must prepare your online store to accommodate the growing needs of the customers which mean, your eCommerce platform must be scalable enough to meet the wide, growing and changing consumer demands. Just like you search for a bigger house when your family grows, you must opt for a scalable eCommerce solution to serve better and faster to your customers. An eCommerce solution provider in the Middle East and other countries know the right tricks and tactics for scalability that you should not miss.

But– What difference is it going to make for the uncertain future of the business?

Let us see how scalability proves itself against COVID-19 induced problems:

Some countries of the MENA region did not rank high when it came to digital freedom although there is a high percentage of digital penetration. Ban on Google Meet, Facebook etc., were one of the reasons for the lag of a strong digitalization. However, there were positive changes in the laws to adapt to the new normal. Even with liberal digital laws, good digital penetration, and a shift in consumer behaviour, retailers of different sectors faced the following common problems during the pandemic.

Customer satisfaction:

As per a study by Google, even a second’s delay in site loading causes 20% of first-time-users to avoid visiting or purchasing from the site. Here, scalability helps as with scalability comes speed, and by improving your site loading speed, your customers won’t have to wait for even a second to shop.

The young population of the Middle East have always enjoyed shopping in offline stores. However, the risk of contracting the virus through hand currency has led to an acceptance of online payment apps. Hence, scaling your site with compelling features customer expect in eCommerce mobile apps like an easy and guided checkout process including multiple payment options; ensures a high customer returning rate.

 

Scaling a website means adding features that give the customer an excellent shopping experience and satisfaction. Some of the ways you can achieve the same are by providing:

  •     A search bar on the top
  •     The option to view the site in different languages or size
  •     Easy navigation
  •     Excellent customer service
  •     Quick responses, etc.

Smooth B2B operations: Imperative for a Strong Base of Your Website

Although a scalable eCommerce platform is beneficial for both B2C and B2B, it can be more advantageous for B2B due to the complex processes involved in it. Nevertheless, scalability proves to be useful in:

Presenting real-time tracking, processing complex orders, and pricing and managing returns as such complexities are handled well through features supported by scalability.

Analyses of subscriptions, shopping cart abandonment rate, conversion, revenue, SEO and many more website metrics are achieved through scalability which also helps in understanding the forthcoming trend and consumer behaviour.

A business is not just about sales and marketing, but also accounting, staff management, logistics, inventory etc., and having a digitalized method of processing these data is helpful. However, the integration of all these systems helps in taking quick action to new and changing trends.

Established businesses can scale out to multiple regions and stores, and such a multilateral presence ushers in many new customers and clients.

It also creates scope for acceptance of Artificial Intelligence, which is seen as the fourth industrial revolution in the Middle Eastern region.

The Takeaway

Growth in business means heavy traffic and sales on your website and if you are thinking that your current eCommerce solution will be able to manage it all then you are wrong.

 

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