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UAE consumers go cashless as trust in digital payments surges amid COVID-19

Monday 22 June 2020 12:58 CET | News

Dubai Police, Dubai Economy (DED), and Visa have released data regarding shifts in the UAE-based consumers’ payment behaviour amid COVID-19. 

According to the press release, 68% of respondents surveyed in the UAE have reduced shopping in-store since the outbreak of the pandemic, while 49% are shopping online more. Besides, when they do shop at stores, 71% are using digital payments over cash with the majority using contactless cards (54%) and mobile wallets (46%) more. Regarding respondents shopping online, 61% use cards or digital wallets to pay online over cash on delivery. Besides, increased trust in the security of the payment technology, speed, convenience, and limited human contact, were the top reasons cited for their increased preference for digital payments. 

Regarding topics such as data privacy and biometrics, up to 53% of respondents stated that they were comfortable sharing personal data with banks, telecom operators, and government owned entities. Name, demographic data and contact information were cited as data that needs to be protected the most. Also, 63% find biometrics secure, while 55% believe biometrics are convenient to use. Furthermore, regarding mobile wallets usage, 60% stated that they trust paying with mobile wallets such as Apple Pay and Samsung Pay. 

The findings also reveal significant differences in the behaviours of Gen Z (18-22 years) compared to the general population. For example, 49% of Gen Z respondents find biometrics secure compared to 70% of the rest. With regards to tokenization technology, 48% of Gen Z consumers believe it improves mobile wallet security compared to 61% of non-Gen Z consumers. 

Furthermore, the data shows that 58% of UAE-based consumers surveyed have abandoned their online shopping cart because of authentication delays or failure. Of those who abandoned their carts, 62% try again after some time, 35% purchased from other sites, 34% purchased from a nearby store, and 32% dropped the idea of purchasing the product altogether. For 66% of respondents, an authentication process that doesn’t require them to enter one-time-passcode (OTP) for standard and recurrent transactions would be more convenient.

The survey provides further insights on how merchants can build trust in ecommerce sites with ‘confidence builders’ such as: offering a wide range of payment options (51%); displaying verified customer reviews (50%); offering payment options in local currency (45%); trust badges/security icons (42%); ease of refunds (42%); and SSL certificate (40%).


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Keywords: UAE, Dubai Police, Dubai Economy, (DED), Visa, payment behaviour, COVID-19, survey, in-store shopping, online shopping, digital payments, contactless cards, mobile wallets, digital wallets, cash on delivery, contactless payments, data privacy, biometrics, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Gen Z, tokenization, cart abandonment, merchants, ecommerce, local currency, SSL
Categories: Payments & Commerce | Online Payments
Countries: United Arab Emirates
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Payments & Commerce






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