The Free Zone has become a powerhouse of some of the leading companies in the region. For a startup looking to set up and incubate before entering the UAE market at large, a free zone is a right place to do so. Sharjah Media City, better known as SHAMS, is one of the most beneficial free zones in the country today.
The third-largest emirate in the country and the only emirate that spreads on the Arabian Gulf and Gulf of Oman coasts, Sharjah, is the UAE’s center for culture and heritage. Its growth has been unprecedented in recent years, contributing to the country’s economic growth.
In 2018, Sharjah posted and increased overall GDP growth of AED97.5 billion from which 91.9% of the total GDP is attributed to the non-oil sectors or about AED 89 billion, based on the data from Sharjah Economic Development Department. This economic growth implies the unique competitiveness of Sharjah as a way of attracting entrepreneurs and investors.
The standard benefits for most free zones are 100% foreign ownership, zero corporate and personal tax, and 100% repatriation of capital and profits. And SHAMS is one of the fastest-growing media free zones, serving as a world-class hub for the media industries, catering to the creative and innovative entrepreneurs.
The above benefits are all achievable in the comfort of your home. If you don’t know where to begin, here’s how you can start your e-commerce business and start generating income without leaving ever your house, provided that you have entirely secured the trade license from SHAMS for doing so.
The website will be the most powerful tool in your online business. Although building from scratch may take a while, this is where your creativity will be first put to use as you develop a platform that will drive your first customers. At this point, you may want to consider working with a website expert to expedite the process or you can do it entirely your own with the help of online tools.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that your website should be income-generating, user-friendly, and running at a good speed. Don’t forget to use a secure host to maintain your website as well as its mobile phone usability to give your customers ease of navigation.
Presenting payment gateways to your customers shows business flexibility. You can build this over time if you can’t launch all at once. But given today’s current scenario, your e-commerce business will become even more competitive in the market when consumers have all ways at their disposal to reach your offerings. Payment options are with the use of credit cards, prepaid cards, and cash-on-delivery (COD). You can also include bank transfers as most banks in the UAE today have mobile applications that allow you to pay, transact, receive, and send money with a click of a button.
If your e-commerce business requires selling products online, then you must have to think of your logistic and storage facility. This is mandatory for any type of business that trades and sells items whether online or not. To have proper warehousing and storage for your products means you are entirely committed to delivering quality products.
Your logistics must be efficient enough to guarantee that your products are safe and secure, and has the ability to reach your consumers without hurdles. There’s an option to hire a third-party logistic, but you also build your very own system. For an online business that offers services, you can entirely skip this part and move on to the next point.
After you manage to take care of the nitty-gritty, you are down to deciding how you can reach your target market. Do a list of marketing needs you will require and put in place a marketing strategy that will serve as your weapon in driving traffic to your website. Align your products or services to your strategy and make sure you are answering the needs and also the wants of your consumers.
There is no wrong move in testing the market while you are still at an early stage of building your customer base. Whatever you learn in either failing or succeeding an online business will be yours to carry, so you can improve and deliver better services as you upscale.
Choosing the right trade license will require you to get in touch with a business setup specialist as Smart Zone. By doing so, you can consider the factors where your business can truly leverage the digital world, get professional advice, and explore areas, including market reach and scalability.