Complex Made Simple

Coming soon: The first online marketplace for SMEs in the Middle East

Digital Economy Solutions (DES), a joint venture between emaratech and the Department of Economic Development of Dubai (DED), is going to launch DubaiStore, the first local online marketplace to focus on SMEs and home-based businesses (e-traders).

DubaiStore, an online marketplace for all licenced businesses in the emirate of Dubai, will focus primarily on promoting businesses with zero possibility of direct competition between it and the sellers, since it does not own or sell any products of its own.

Read: SMEs without proper insurance are taking huge and unnecessary risks

Hosting home businesses

DubaiStore will also host the licensed home businesses (e-Traders) acting as a reference platform, for consumers to access a range of products many of which are not found in the retail market.

“This added exposure enhances the brand visibility for the e-traders while also creating a new and vital sales avenue for them to grow their business,” a statement said.

Presenting the DubaiStores model to the public at the ongoing Seamless exhibition in Dubai, Abdallah Hassan Ahmed Hassan, CEO of DES, said: “We plan to launch the online marketplace in the third quarter this year. DubaiStore aims to support the economic growth of Dubai by encouraging e-commerce as an efficient trading channel, governed by Dubai’s laws and regulations. It is a government initiative under the operational control of DES.”

The platform will have all the capabilities of creating and managing online stores and orders, which caters the needs of all business segments.

Analytics and advisory services will also be available to support business retention and growth.

Revealed: Gulf travellers’ online hotel room booking habits

Features of DubaiStore 

DubaiStore features include:

– Elevated brand identity through distinct company/brand logo, name and description;

– A dedicated e-store within the marketplace;

– Enhanced customer interaction through onsite message centre between the seller and the consumer, and various messenger and social media integrations including WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Instagram;

Read: Is the region on the verge of another ‘great depression’ reminiscent of 2008?

– A level of autonomy of operational and commercial functionalities, controlled by the merchants, such as defining product bundles, using their own pickup locations and their own courier service;

– Integrated ‘noqodi’ payment gateway to facilitate online payments as well as integration with ZAJEL courier service to facilitate deliveries;

– Increased confidence in consumers due to marketplace affiliation with DED and its departments such as the Commercial Compliance & Consumer Protection, which guarantees consumer rights, fair trading and the participation of 100% trusted licensed businesses;

– Exposure through the marketing activities of DubaiStore;

– Full guidance and assistance with regards to on-boarding process and store management.