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The group launched the Landmarkshops.com website in December for three of its brands including Babyshop. Sarah Dea / The National
The group launched the Landmarkshops.com website in December for three of its brands including Babyshop. Sarah Dea / The National

Landmark to boost its online presence

Growing retail sales online have encouraged the Dubai-based retailer Landmark Group to increase its e-commerce offerings.

Growing retail sales online have encouraged the Dubai-based retailer Landmark Group to increase its e-commerce offerings.

More brands are being placed online and are to be made available outside the UAE.

The group launched the Landmark.com website in December for three of its brands, Emax, Babyshop and Splash. It is hoping to add a further three to five businesses by next year.

"We have seen in the last six to eight months web sales have increased by three times since we started. The number of orders and number of visitors to the website has gone up by almost two and a half times," said Savitar Jagtiani, the business head of LandmarkShops. "This is just the beginning, we have more home, beauty, retail and sports brands to take online."

When the site was launched, LandmarkShops was offering up to 1,700 products for all three retailers. This has now risen to 3,000, and the company aims to add more products this year.

LandmarkShops is also expanding its payment options to include PayPal and international credit cards. Once these milestones are achieved, the retailer will consider expanding its e-commerce presence to other countries.

"Traditionally there was only way to consume retail, then e-commerce came and now mobile and tablet," Mr Jagtiani said. "At least 20 per cent of our traffic comes from mobile, of which 55 per cent comes from tablet devices and the rest from smartphones."

The Middle East and North Africa e-commerce market is currently worth US$1.2 billion but is set to grow to $15bn by 2015. This is still minuscule considering the global e-commerce market, estimated to be worth more than $1 trillion.

"The region has witnessed tremendous growth, in the last four to five years there have been 70 to 80 new e-commerce sites, but in terms of numbers it is still early days.

"The dominance of offline retail and the level of comfort it has established is one of the challenges. But the two can always complement each other than compete," Mr Jagtiani said.

Landmark Group has 17 retail businesses and operates in 20 countries.

 

thamid@thenational.ae

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