Saudi e-commerce to hit $13bn in 2015
Study finds that online retail counts for 8% of total retail in Saudi Arabia
The Saudi e-commerce market will reach $13.3 billion in 2015 and count for 8% of the Kingdom's overall retail market, according to research published by a Dubai-based web design and development company PixHear.
The report said that that an online retail market is considered to be developed if at least 8.5% of a country's total retail is done online, such as in Germany where online retail accounts for 11.7% of its total retail trade, or Australia with 8.9%. Countries falling behind include the US (7.1%), Japan (6.8 %) and France (6.7 %).
Regional retailers in Saudi Arabia claim a minor share of the Saudi e-commerce market, with Souq.com occupying 13%, Sukar 8%, and Namshi 7%.
The study also found that 75% of online consumers still prefer cash on delivery (COD) as the dominant payment method and electronics are still the leading category for spending.
Arabic is the dominant language in the e-commerce space, while 55% of online consumers are from Riyadh province and 40% from Makkah province.
According to the Saudi Gazette, another study said statistics show that residents of Saudi Arabia are incredibly active on the Internet and social media sites.
As well as Internet usage, Saudi Arabia's population is also incredibly active on a variety of social media sites.
The majority of the population has never known life without the Internet. The number of text messages sent each day now exceeds the human population. More than 60% of the Saudi population are under the age of 24 and have never known the world without the Internet.
For example, YouTube features more users from Saudi Arabia than any other country in the world.
Social media and the Internet have proven not to simply be a trend - rather they represent a shift in how the world communicates and operates.