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Abu Dhabi: The official portal of the UAE Government witnessed significant increase in its users, touching 5 million in 2018.

Compared to the number of users in 2017, the figure tripled in just one year. The number of sessions for 2018 reached 7.5 million, while page-views amounted to more than 12 million. For top visited pages, ‘visa tracking and fees’ came in the first place, followed by ‘value added tax’ and then ‘employment laws and regulations’.

In recent months, the portal’s ranking on the search engines jumped to the top in search results for many of the keywords used by people in their search for information and services provided by the UAE government.

Statistics show that 83 per cent of users visit the portal through organic search and 37 per cent of users come to the portal from countries outside the UAE which include India, Saudi Arabia, the UK, the USA and Egypt. The terms the portal users searched for on the portal’s search engine focused on visas, jobs and taxes. Different phrases were used to search, but most of them related to visas, jobs and taxes.

Hamad Obaid Al Mansouri, Director General, TRA comments, “Government.ae is the official portal of the UAE Government and is the main interface of the UAE on the internet. It supports the Whole-of-Government principle, as emphasised by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, when he launched the portal in 2011. The increase in the portal users contributes to the achievement of the TRA’s goals, particularly the enhancement of electronic lifestyle in the UAE. It also helps increase in usage of online services to keep up with the Leadership’s instructions.”

For his part, Salem Al Housani, Acting Deputy Director General, Information and Smart Government Sector, says, “We aim to make the UAE’s national portal as the first destination for people to search for government services and information. These people could be citizens, residents, visitors or those living abroad and having the desire to know about the UAE. Therefore, the portal management team updates the portal’s content daily, taking into account the suggestions and feedback of the portal users.”

It is noteworthy that the TRA launched the revamped portal in April 2017, after implementing major updates that reflect the global developments and local needs. The portal management team conducted many user experience tests to monitor the needs of different groups of society and incorporated the results into the business requirements in the areas such as content, design and accessibility of information and services, focusing on the people of determination in particular.

In May 2018, the TRA launched a campaign aiming at the development of the content of the official portal of the UAE Government (Government.ae). The mechanism of the campaign involves the target groups suggesting information that is missing on the portal and providing official references and sources of such information. The campaign achieved considerable success, which resulted in adding and updating more than 100 topics.

Based on this success, it was decided to continue the campaign during 2019. The campaign will be one of the several channels of communication between the users and portal management and to follow up on the interests and needs of the government’s customers.