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Smart technology a key driver behind successful e-commerce adoption: Survey

The region’s retailers are keen to ensure they are equipped with the right tools at the front and back end to optimize the customer experience and satisfaction.
Internet of Things and big data have been recognized as key drivers for the future of the retail industry in Saudi Arabia, according to a new study led by Honeywell, a global software-industrial company.
The research, conducted in partnership with YouGov, shows that in Saudi Arabia 95 percent of retailers believe that e-commerce will bring further improvements to the shopping experience, with technology being a key driver behind this view. According to the study, Saudi retailers stated that the Internet of Things (38 percent) and big data (34 percent) will have the biggest impact on shaping the future of their industry.
The results of the study showed that 36 percent of retailers in Saudi Arabia are under the impression that customers are not satisfied with current delivery options. With customers expecting increasingly faster sorting, dispatch and delivery times on their online purchases, the region’s retailers are keen to ensure they are equipped with the right tools at the front and back end to optimize the customer experience and satisfaction.
Technology that improves connectivity and which leads to faster and more accurate deliveries are currently in high demand, with nearly seven out of 10 of Saudi retailers (69 percent) claiming they have seen a positive impact on productivity since implementing such solutions. Around 64 percent of retailers in Saudi Arabia who claim they do not have the right solutions for their business, say it is due to the perceived cost of upgrades, while nearly half attribute a lack of information and compatibility issues as the main barriers. Crucially, 28 percent of Saudi Arabian retailers surveyed stated they do not have the right technology to enable automation in their business.
Edmond Mikhael, general manager, Honeywell Safety and Productivity Solutions (SPS) in the Middle East, Turkey and Africa (META), said: “The study shows that new technology is changing the retail sector within Saudi Arabia in a positive way. Internet of Things, big data and artificial intelligence are improving productivity and it is clear that more retailers in Saudi Arabia are witnessing the benefits. It is evident that there are still barriers to technology adoption and we believe that more needs to be done in educating retailers on the potential benefits technology can bring to their retail operations.”

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