How to Start an e-Commerce Business in Dubai

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What makes you want to start an e-commerce business in Dubai? To answer your question, let’s look at these facts.

With an estimated US$8.5 billion in revenue in 2021, the United Arab Emirates ranked 24th among all eCommerce markets, ahead of Vietnam and behind Austria.

The UAE has one of the world’s highest internet penetration rates, making it one of the best places to launch an e-commerce business in Dubai.

The UAE has the largest B2C e-commerce market.

With more than 60% of GCC online buyers based out of Dubai, the UAE is also a leader in e-commerce. Therefore, financiers are interested in learning the best practices for launching an e-commerce venture in Dubai.

After outlining all of these details, let’s begin the main steps of opening an online store in Dubai.

How to Start an eCommerce Business in Dubai

  1. Learn about Market Potential.

Choose the appropriate business model by considering market trends, client needs, and your company’s distinctive value proposition (UVP). Depending on the size of the market, you can select from these models:

  • Business-to-business (B2B).
  • Business-to-client (B2C).
  • Client-to-business (C2B) module.
  1. Choose an Appropriate location.

One of the most crucial things to consider is choosing the right location to operate your online store from Dubai. However, a physical office is not necessary.

A “free zone” or a “non-free zone” is a legal area where you can obtain a licence (Mainland zone). Running a company out of a free zone has benefits such as not paying income tax, keeping all business profits, not having to pay corporate tax, having full ownership of the company, and not having to spend much on customs duties. You will be granted official permission to operate local and international businesses if you establish a company on the mainland.

  1. Register your business’s trade name

Fill out an Economic Department form to register your trade name in UAE. Your choice must be legitimate and valid in Dubai. Trade names should not contain offensive, religious, or controversial words. You must use the person’s complete name if you decide to name your business after them.

  1. Obtain a Dubai e-commerce licence

The next step is to apply for an e-commerce licence in Dubai once you’ve determined a suitable location. The governing body is the Department of Economic Development. If you have an e-commerce licence in Dubai, you can conduct numerous business activities through social media networks. If you have a mainland licence, you can start trading goods and services directly with the local market, whereas a free zone licence allows you to work with a local distributor.

  1. Create an eCommerce website.

The most crucial aspect of deciding how to launch an online store in Dubai is having a reliable, well-optimised, user-friendly, and secure website for your clients. For your e-commerce website, you ought to register a domain. After that is finished, you can easily create your website using one of the many website builders available online without any coding.

  1. Payment Gateway

You need a merchant account from your bank or a payment service provider to integrate a payment gateway into your website. Since the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) oversees electronic transactions in the UAE, you must have optimised payment gateways to handle user traffic. Make sure your website builder offers 24/7 customer support for failed payments.

  1. Customer/logistics support

Customer support, database management, and import-export facilities are crucial to a company’s survival. In Dubai, you can build your own logistics or use third-party services.

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