Dubai online shopping retailer Kentessa.com drives higher sales despite economic downturn
- United Arab Emirates: Saturday, April 11 - 2009 at 11:30
- PRESS RELEASE
As the global economic downturn significantly affects margins for conventional retailers, for e-commerce companies like Kentessa.com, it is providing a glimmer of good news as the company continues to display a steady earnings growth.
As a result, Kentessa.com is scaling capacity by doubling its product offerings within the next three months, while improving the design and architectural platform of its site to align with prevailing e-commerce trends.
Taking advantage of the broadband infrastructure that was established in the last three to four years in the U.A.E., Kentessa.com's CEO Hamad Ahmed identified that an opportunity existed for a niche e-commerce market in the U.A.E. Most households now in the U.A.E. have high-speed Internet and are opting for the convenience that online shopping offers.
"The feedback we've been receiving from our customers has been encouraging," said Hamad Ahmed. "A large number of our customers are international and are ordering gifts for a relative or family member living in Dubai and once they find out about our service and range of products, they become repeat customers."
Approximately 80% of the population of the U.A.E. are emigrants from the United Kingdom, India, Russia, Philippines, and Australia and make up over 100 different nationalities. Operating since fourth quarter 2008, Kentessa.com is a vendor of brand name products at discounted prices.
With over 500 items currently in stock, the best-selling product is perfumes. While the online retailer takes orders from anywhere in the world, deliveries are exclusive to the U.A.E.
The Dubai online shopping site carries Victoria's Secret gift sets, Patchi chocolates, Swarovski crystal, accessories such as cuff links and necklaces, home décor items, toys, designer perfumes and flowers for occasions such as birthday, anniversary, and holiday presents.
The designer perfumes and corporate products are sold up to 25% below market price. Kentessa.com focuses on next-day express delivery, and runs its own fleet of temperature-controlled vans that serve as its' courier service.
Repeat customer Meredith Myers is a regular customer at Kentessa.com and usually purchases corporate gifts. "I find the site very useful because it saves me a trip to the mall," said Myers, who is originally from Australia and relocated to Dubai in 2003. "I think their team is impressive and they go out of their way to make sure I am happy."
"Our goal is to raise the bar of the online shopping experience and exceed our customers' expectations," said Ahmed. Modeled after corporations such as 1800flowers.com and Amazon.com, Kentessa.com's top decision-makers are Ivy League graduates who have worked at e-commerce sites like Priceline.com.
The company attributes user-friendly website interface, in addition to Search Engine Marketing (SEM) and Search Engine Optimization (SEO), as indispensible ingredients to their accelerated sales growth.
With Kentessa.com's new design, completed in mid-March, the site is easier to navigate, especially when checking out. "We have reduced the number of checkout steps by fifty percent and we hope this will increase our conversion rates," said Bill Kahn, CIO at Kentessa.com.
The company's lean overhead operating expenses are also contributing to their overall success since retail space in Dubai is very expensive. "This definitely frees up financing and has enabled us to invest in online marketing and optimization and increase our product offerings," said Ahmed.
For payment options, Kentessa.com offers Google checkout - while also allowing its users the convenience of online chat for a better shopping experience.
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