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So, what do women really want?

Portrait of young beautiful women with her shopping bags

By Jethu Abraham

From international names in luxury retail to haute couture, brands in the Middle East are in constant competition with each other to earn the sophisticated lady customer’s interest and trust.

A recent survey by the Chalhoub Group shows that the average GCC luxury consumer spends $28,800 a year on beauty, fashion and gifts. In addition to this, 94 per cent of respondents go shopping ‘whenever they feel like it’, spending an average of $2,400 per month.

A similar report about online retail shows that shoppers spend $3.2 billion in the Gulf region alone. With more brands vying to make their presence in countries such as the UAE and KSA, these numbers are predicted to double by 2017.

Yahoo! Maktoob Research has revealed that one-third of Arab women in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region shop online, with single women being the most active online shoppers. According to the findings, women are happy with online purchases due to time effectiveness, money, comfort and availability.

While women in the region are renowned for sporting an independent sense of style, brands now need to focus on catering to and providing customised and exclusive experiences, as well as better ways to market to women in the Middle East, as more women in the region opt for the UK and Europe to go luxury shopping.

‘What women want’ at arab luxury world on June 1 and 2, 2015, will be hosting panellists from across the GCC to discuss and understand female customers and their preferences.

Panellists for the session include Hala Al Gergawi, executive managing director at Zahrat Al Khaleej and; Rachel Arthur, senior editor at WGSN; Jawaher Al Kuwari, founder and MD at Jo Lamode and Maya Kaanan, client managing director at Starcom MediaVest Group.

The session will also try and understand the women’s choices in the region in comparison with the global trends and analyse the marketing techniques used by premium brands globally.


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