How to Start an E-Commerce Business in Abu Dhabi?

by Zaara 27, Oct 2020

How to Start an E-Commerce Business in Abu Dhabi?

Abu Dhabi is a potential goldmine for resources and opportunities for aspiring new business owners who want to take their retail operations digital by starting a new E-commerce venture. With this comes a responsibility to set up a business in Abu Dhabi under the licensing and registration policies for E-commerce companies. This article aims to cover the information that you will need to start your digital retail business.

Abu Dhabi may not be the most popular destination of its Emirati siblings because, in terms of global popularity, Dubai picks the top spot amongst the seven emirates in the UAE. But when it comes to analyzing the business market, the concentrated flow of every business in the UAE is connected to Abu Dhabi. Whether it is because Abu Dhabi occupies the majority of coastal space for trade activities or because it is the hotspot for any largescale economic changes, the capital of the UAE has always surprised investors with the blooming business opportunities.

Overview of Abu Dhabi’s E-commerce Sector

From fashion to food, smartphones to smart learning, this sector is skyrocketing through the roof in the UAE. The new generation of consumers is demanding online services that are simple to access through the internet and make lifestyle convenient for living in Abu Dhabi. Global economists have also stated that E-commerce has vastly enhanced and influenced the standard of living as well as the lifestyle of consumers. The significant businesses that are operated through online mediums are –

The sector is currently valued at $27.2 Billion in the UAE exponentially, becoming one of the most attractive business opportunities and the easiest to establish the business in for new players in the market. With the involvement of the government and a consumer market that thrives on online services, the E-commerce industry will continue to grow over the years, benefitting small and large companies.

How to Start an E-commerce Business in Abu Dhabi

1. Licensing and Registration

Well before you call us boring, we'd like to interject by saying "First things first". Abu Dhabi, as the capital of the UAE, follows some simple policies for business incorporation. Still, even these simple policies are followed strictly to ensure legitimacy and documentation of every website based and non-website-based business. Business owners must register the business and apply for a specific license to start a website-based company with the Department of Economic Development (DED).

2. Development of Company Website

The website is an integral part of an online business where the company will be able to list and advertise their products and services. The customers view the portfolio of goods and make a purchase placing an order for the product; thus, the website must not only be attractive and catchy but must also support the various technical features to handle enough customers at a time as well as accept payments and send out delivery notifications. Many websites also provide multiple payment options such as –

  • Net Banking
  • Digital Wallets
  • Cash on Delivery
  • Gift vouchers
  • Exclusive Coupons and Points

P.S – Some E-commerce websites in the USA accept cryptocurrency as a payment mode which is quite exciting considering how UAE has been investing and expanding in the field of cryptocurrency as part of The Blockchain Strategy.

3. Customs Registration

E-commerce companies often acquire their goods via shipments from other countries which is why the company must register with the Customs authority in order to become validated for accessing the Emirati ports and shipment arrival locations.  An importer’s code is assigned to the business, and customs duty is levied to the imported goods. An alternative to this is outsourcing the work from an existing shipping company that has a license.

4. Acquiring Workspace and Workforce

Once the business has been set up, and the primary team is ready, it is officially time to find a legitimate workspace. Now you can finally add that significant point to your success stories of how the company was founded in your garage or college dormitory. Finding a workspace in Abu Dhabi won’t be a hassle as there are many entities that you can assist you in the process. As for talent acquisition of necessary Human Resources, well considering how current situations are, there is an abundance of talent but the lack of jobs. Thus, putting out walk-in announcements on recruitment platforms will easily attract hundreds of personnel offering their technical and corporate skill sets to the company.

How can Commitbiz Help?

If you have made it so far, then we cannot stop but think that you have a passion inside you that is driving the entrepreneurial mindset. But if any of the above points seem intimidating even a little bit then no need to be worried. We at Commitbiz comprise of a dedicated team of specialized consultants that have over 15 years of industry experience in the UAE. We provide tailor-made services to our clients, whether it is a business setup in Abu Dhabi or any sibling emirate. Additionally, we have various services on our website, which is also a knowledge platform where you can access multiple blogs to know more about how to set up a business in the UAE. Let us assist you in starting your entrepreneurial journey. Contact us to know more.