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Middle-east’s new battle ground

Souq vs. Noon: the ultimate showdown.

Being an obsessed online-shopper - the kind who shops almost anything that can be shopped online, I couldn’t help but notice that the online selection of products in UAE region was still limited (compared to my reference points of India and the US) and left a lot to be desired.

First, let me share the Methodology.

I wanted to arrive at an NPS score, which has now become the de-facto measure of customer experience. However, rather than assigning a number based on my gut, I decided to construct it from ground-up, using data from my experience during each stage of the journey.

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Sample Score Card
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Formula to calculate NPS

Let’s now look at how the two compared.

I started my quest of the white Nike sneakers using the respective iOS mobile apps of both Souq and Noon and here’s how they stack up against each other on various parameters:

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Search results on Noon were very relevant to my search query
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Search results on Souq were less relevant to my search query
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Noon’s navigation was quite friendly and allowed me to narrow down my choice quickly
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Souq’s navigation left a lot to be desired as I couldn’t navigate it to my desired selection and hit a dead-end
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Navigating from the brand page doesn’t lead to the desired selection
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Navigating from the brand page resulted in a red route (dead-end) since I couldn’t even reach only men shoes
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From the PDP to Cart — Noon
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From PDP to Cart — Souq
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Steps to complete the Checkout — Noon
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Steps to complete the Checkout — Souq
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Noon’s delivery experience was superlative
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Souq’s delivery experience
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The comparative timelines for the order completion
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The Final Tally:

As you can see below, Noon scored way better than Souq on most parameters and delighted me as a customer on several fronts, whereas the Souq experience was a bit underwhelming with no real delight.

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The Winner

In my experience, Noon delivered a much more delightful experience than Souq. Not too mention the Noon’s distinctive branding (including the packaging) which is nicely carried throughout the customer journey has had quite an impact on my purchase decision and I have placed numerous orders on the site since this experience. Opening that brown box with bright yellow accent feels like a delight and that’s the warm and fuzzy feeling that builds loyalty.

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Final Score & the Winner

In Summary,

While it’s too early to declare winners in this market, it seems like Noon is off to a good start and will serve as a nice wake-up call for Souq, which has enjoyed a near monopoly for several years.

Thanks for reading. If you found these words interesting, please recommend them (the little handclap) so it can reach others.

On a mission to connect the dots amongst data, emotions & randomness. Love using tech and data to deliver joy. Currently at Stanford chasing the next big thing.

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