Kuwait flag Kuwait: Buying and Selling

E-commerce in Kuwait

E-commerce

Internet access
In 2017, there were just over 4 million internet users in the country, making the penetration rate 98%. That year, there were 1.3 fixed-broadband subscriptions per 100 inhabitants, a number that considerably grows when it comes to mobile-broadband subscriptions (227.9 per 100 inhabitants). Additionally, 86% of households had a computer, and 99.7% of them had internet access at home. Kuwait has showed a strong growth in the internet access due primarily to the high ownership of smartphones. With mobile penetration at high levels, the market focus has shifted from fixed to mobile data market.
E-commerce market
In 2017, e-commerce sales in Kuwait reached an estimate of US$ 670 million and e-commerce penetration was 53%. Although the Middle East in general is a huge retail market, it is still behind in terms of e-commerce. Mall culture is still prevalent and there is a general lack of trust in online shopping as a whole. The high rate of smartphone penetration in the country — 240% — is one of the main reasons for e-commerce growth in Kuwait. The mobile operators in Kuwait offer one of the most advanced mobile networks in the Middle East and 100% of land area and population is covered by mobile network. In spite of that, e-commerce remains predominately limited to online banking and financial brokerage services, as most Kuwaiti companies do not conduct online B2B and B2C transactions. Paying bills online is the most common activity and in 2017, 53% of e-commerce users in Kuwait made money transfers over the Internet. Even though 97% of Kuwaitis use credit and debit cards, a major share of online shoppers prefer cash over all other payment methods when it comes to e-commerce. People in their thirties represent 65% of all online buyers. As for gender, 70% of e-shoppers are male and 30% female. The most popular online shopping categories are clothing, electronics and travel tickets and accommodations. Some of the most popular e-commerce websites in the country are digumz.com, xcite.com, taw9eel.com, ubuy.com, souq.com.kw, theyard-kw.com, and thouqi.com.

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Latest Update: November 2022