Still a better chance than in the rest of MENA.

Jojo Puthuparampil is a business news writer for Inc. Arabia.

A significant section of online shoppers in UAE prefer to buy fresh food and household groceries at a physical store than buying them online, according to a report by Nielsen.

More than 40% shoppers in UAE visit a physical store to buy fresh groceries compared with more than 60% in the Middle East and Africa.

This is consistent with the global average at 44% for fresh groceries and 39% for personal-care and beauty products, according to the report.

The report’s findings in the grocery space are something to take note of—given the number of e-grocery acquisitions in the UAE market.

For durables, store websites top the list of sources when it came to fashion (49%), while 50% cited brand websites as the most influential source of information for consumer electronics.

Nine out of 10 shoppers in UAE prefer to go online to buy their travel tickets or for events while 40% search online for fashion purchases and 38% do so for gadgets, the survey found.

According to a recent study by PayPal and Ipsos, online spending in the UAE and is expected to reach Dhs33 billion ($8.98 billion) by 2018.

According to the study, 68% of adults in UAE shopped online in the past 12 months, up from 63% in 2015.

Half of online adults surveyed (48%) said they would increase their online spending in the next 12 months, citing the convenience of shopping online.

The study named the Middle East as one of the regions with the highest incidence of cross-border online shoppers.

This is supported by the fact that 46% of UAE consumers surveyed said they had purchased goods from overseas companies.

Travel and transportation were the most common cross-border shopping category in the UAE in the past 12 months, while a third of cross-border shoppers purchased event tickets, according to the survey.

The US was the most popular cross-border online shopping destination for UAE shoppers. Shoppers from UAE spent an estimated Dhs2.4 billion on purchases from US websites in the past 12 months, followed by India and China.

Factors such as having a secure way to pay, free shipping and proof of product authenticity encouraged UAE shoppers to buy cross-border products online.

According to the study, with high rates of mobile penetration in the UAE, online shoppers are increasingly opting to make purchases on their mobile devices.

This resulted in an estimated 29% growth in mobile spend between 2015 and 2016 to reach close to Dhs10 billion.