How did e-commerce change in the UAE since Covid-19?
Many consumers shifted from eating out to home cooking. As a result, grocery delivery services, such as Daily by talabat have really taken off. Q-commerce is talabat and Delivery Hero’s next play for the future of online retail, and pioneering the next phase of delivery. Basically, q-commerce means quick commerce and it will enable consumers to have goods within an hour (ultra-fast). Right now, our Daily by talabat store is our first foray into q-commerce and provides groceries 24/7 and in 30 minutes or less with free delivery.
Tell us more about Daily by talabat. How does it differ from the services provided by others?
Daily by talabat is the region’s first q-commerce store without a storefront. What makes Daily by talabat different from others is that it is providing ultra-fast 30-minute delivery of groceries to customers at hypermarket prices and that too 24/7. There is no other app or service offering this kind of affordability, speed and service. From fresh produce, fruit, meat, bread and grains to baking supplies, treats, as well as cleaning materials, safety equipment, bathroom and personal hygiene supplies, and everything in between, you can order anything on the app.
Orders are picked at the different Daily by talabat stores spread across Dubai. These stores or local warehouses are essentially mini-supermarkets without the shopfronts. They are highly automated and use data science for optimising items offering an amazing customer experience, speed and affordability. Keeping in mind that safety remains the top priority in the community, talabat makes sure that all staff who are picking groceries at the warehouse, as well as our riders wear masks, gloves and use sanitisers — as well as have their temperature checked. We also fully disinfect and sanitise our stores regularly.
Daily with talabat gained more traction as the crisis hit. What’s the interest been like?
During the Coronavirus pandemic consumer ordering trends have been redefined. Our stats for Daily by talabat show that. Some interesting examples of our findings for April: Fresh, immunity boosting foods such as tomatoes, onions, oranges and milk were in demand, overtaking bananas and energy drinks.
Home-cooking became a widely-practised trend during the National Sterilisation Programme, with the baking category growing exponentially. The insights show that butter/margarine is up by 2,400 per cent, milk by 1,700 per cent, and cocoa powder 3,400 per cent that month.
Demand for masks, gloves and sanitisers rose by 2,000 per cent, clearly signalling that safety was important for the community.
Can you describe how you see the ‘new normal’ for this sector?
There are a few changes that took place, which give us a good indication on what the future of grocery delivery will look like. For starters, we’ll continue to see a stronger confidence by users in using cashless payment options.
Also, as we slowly see a rise in consumer purchasing across all sectors, affordability is expected to play a huge role in purchasing decision making post-Covid. Finally, consumers expectations are high when it comes to safety measures and brands will have to continue prioritising this.