The Online shopping Market in Lebanon is booming. While I have compared AliExpress & Lebanese online shopping websites years ago. Back then, most Lebanese have never heard of the Chinese online shopping website. Today, everyone is shipping products from AliExpress to Lebanon.
In 2014, the number of products shipped from AliExpress reached 20K orders a month (according to one of the logistics companies in Lebanon). Prices were cheap, you could literally find any product you’d need (even ask for a customized one) and Liban Post was delivering packages to a users address without charging any fee.
Although, tax rules were applied on packages and parcels arriving from AliExpress, it was still the cheapest shopping website available. Back then, no local online shopping website was selling similar products with acceptable prices, shipping terms or secure payment methods.
I’m a big fan of AliExpress (a diamond member with 993 orders) and although some stores in Lebanon, are still shopping from AliExpress and selling the products in Lebanon for premium prices (double/triple). Lebanese now are aware of the opportunities available online and are going to local eCommerce websites & businesses on social media for their purchases.
The number of cards issued for online usage by Lebanese banks in the past couple years has increased a lot. I’ve been using BankMed’s Cards for all my online transactions especially when I’m not sure about a Website’s trustworthiness.
The online shopping market in Lebanon continues to mature. Today Lebanese are accustomed to the “online shopping experience”. The total number of eCommerce websites in Lebanon has grown significantly similar to Ishtari, and HiCart ….and daily deals websites that were booming years ago like makhsoom is shifting to selling products online while others like scoop city has closed.
However, the online shopping market in Lebanon is no longer restricted to eCommerce websites. Even individuals are selling products online through Instagram & Facebook especially when it comes to the fashion industry from shoes, clothes, handmade crafts, accessories…
The social networks are providing exposure to any target market, cheap advertising cost, easy customer engagement tools. Logistics services in Lebanon have grown as well to meet the demand of speedy cheap delivery with an average of 5$ around Lebanon, and cash-on-delivery is the payment method that can launch your business almost immediately.
The rise and rise of online shopping market in Lebanon will open doors to new business opportunities across different industries. The fashion industry has shown continued increase in its online sales driven by overall growth in the online fashion market and other markets will gradually move its focus online.
According to mastercard, more than half of online shoppers in Lebanon use the internet to buy airline tickets, book hotels, shop for clothes, and more.
PS Be aware of your privacy and security when shopping online.
Lebanon Digital Transformation Conference 2018 kicked off today under the High Patronage of His Excellency, The President of the Lebanese Republic, General Michel Aoun and The Minister of State for Administrative Reform, Her Excellency, Dr. Inaya Ezzeddine to present the strategy and path to transition to a digital e-government.
The conference hosted Tom Loosemore, Co-Founder of Digital Government UK. Tom led the successful implementation in digitally transforming the government. He also emphasized the role of local talent in Lebanon to achieving that.
Digital transformation in Lebanon will help save time and fight corruption in the public sector. Lebanese will no longer have to wait in long queues to complete a simple document and will no longer have to pay “extra money” to get their basic documents done. All official documents and applications will be completed from one platform and a unified user-experience.
The adoption of Lebanon Digital Transformation raises questions about cyber security including “safeguarding & securing data” and “data privacy” across systems, and devices. Especially in the absence of any current “internet laws” that are clearly set for cases around online activities, electronic communication and privacy protection.
It was just yesterday when a Former Head of ISF Anti-Cybercrime was involved in fabricating evidence against a Lebanese citizen. And couple months earlier, a government website collected sensitive data from Lebanese living abroad for the elections without any privacy protection.
It’s about time that our government takes solid steps towards digital transformation in Lebanon. It’s definitely a great initiative that will revolutionize the public sector if applied.
Vero is the hot new social media app that has been downloaded almost 1 million times in 24 hours. The app is founded by the Lebanese Ayman Hariri, the son of former Prime Minister Rafic Hariri
So what is Vero? Its a social media app similar to Instagram and Facebook and what makes it different is that you will have to pay a subscription but it’s AD-FREE.
Users have reported the ambiguity of the privacy policies and terms of service. However the app has released a tweet with an update regarding this issue. Well in Lebanon, online privacy rules and regulations aren’t applied, not even by the government.
We have updated both to clarify.
We appreciate your trust!
— Vero (@verotruesocial) February 23, 2018
I tried the app and it’s a bit slow and users on twitter have been reporting technical issues but that is only expected as Vero hits the number one app of the social media category of the app store.
The Vero app has been glitchy and pointless so far 👍🏼
— Laura Lee (@Laura88Lee) February 28, 2018
Others have called for the apps deletion after finding that Hariri was involved in Oger, a construction company in Saudi Arabia that didn’t pay its migrant workers from countries including India, Pakistan, and the Philippines for over eight months. The hashtag #DeleteVero is taking over the internet. Mashable just published an article on how to delete Vero.
— Taylor Lorenz (@TaylorLorenz) February 28, 2018
Vero promises smarter connecting – Everything’s not for everyone, so we’ve made picking your audience completely intuitive for each post.
The subscription price has not been released yet but if you are among the first million users, the app is free!
Coworking spaces in Lebanon is booming. Experts agree that the working in a shared space with professionals from different industries rather than a company office or coffee shop is working.
Coworking spaces for entrepreneurs, freelancers, startups and business owners in Lebanon are developing rapidly and successfully. The shared spaces provides a community that boosts productivity, creates discipline and motivates coworkers.
I’ve been an 8-5 office worker for almost 6 years and I just kick-started my freelance social media & digital marketing career. I’ve set up my home office, spent long days in coffee shops and I’m going to try working in coworking places for a month
So, here’s a complete list of coworking spaces in Beirut, Lebanon offering functional work environment with unique services and packages for all budgets:
Amenities: Fast unlimited internet, 3 locations, Free Coffee, a Relaxing Open Garden, Rooftop, Professional & Social Events…
Main Campus: Spears, Hamra, Beirut (Map)
Touch Lab: Beirut Souks, Beirut (Map)
Geek Express: Saifi Village (Map)
Day pass: 16$/day
You can become an antwork member and get your free nomad subscription 1 day access per month to the coworking space. PS Antwork have been nominated for ‘Best Coworking Space in Beirut’ in the Members’ Choice 2018 Awards.
Beirut Digital District BDD:
Amenities: Very Fast internet, 7 Buildings, events & workshops, gym, free coffee, auditorium, outdoor terrace.
Location: Nassif El Yaziji Street, Bachoura District, Beirut, Lebanon
Day pass: Berytech DigiHive 20$/day
BDD is currently the biggest community hosting more than 50 startups in Lebanon and 3 accelerators including Berytech, Speed and UK Lebanon Tech Hub. But if you are looking to for a private office, you will have to join a long waiting list.
Amenities: Internet, pool, gym, 200 sqm coworking space, housing, workshops & events
Location: 20 Rue 17, Yarzeh, Baabda, Lebanon (map)
Day pass: 25$/day
The Olive Grove
Amenities: Free coffee, conference room, fast internet.
Location: West House 3 Building, 2nd Floor, Jeanne D’Arc Street, Hamra (map)
Day pass: 15$/day
Servcorp Louis Vuitton Building
Amenities: Fast & free Internet, free coffee, free parking, events & workshops
Location: Levels 2 & 3, Louis Vuitton Building, 1479 Marfaa Beirut Souks, Fakhri Bey, Allenby Street
Day pass: 10$/day
Berytech Co-Working Space
Amenities: Fast & free Internet, free access to lounge and food court, referral & loyalty program benefits, access to Fablab
Location: Mathaf, Berytech Building, 3rd Floor
Day pass: 16$/day
Amenities: highspeed Internet, kitchen, free coffee, events space
Location: Twin Towers Building Joünié Lebanon (map)
Day pass: 7$/day student plan
Innovation Factory Beirut
Location: Street 401, Mkalles (map)
Amenities: high speed internet, events & workshops, exhibition space, conference room, kitchenette, conference room
Location: Jnah, venezuela street (map)
Day pass: 18$/day
Place and productivity are more connected than ever. With over 10 coworking spaces in Lebanon – Beirut, a small country, you’re sure to find the right budget and environment for you and your business!
When You’re a ‘Digital Nomad,’ the World Is Your Office – nytimes.com
Drop me an email if I missed listing your favorite coworking spaces in Lebanon – Beirut and share your experience (and this article).
Yesterday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Emigrants announced that the online registration has closed. More than 90,0000 registered Lebanese expats will be voting in the upcoming Lebanese elections 2018.
This is the first time in the history of Lebanon in which non-resident Lebanese will be able to vote. I work as a social media and digital marketing consultant in Lebanon, so I was excited to check the website. Not only i was shocked that the website does not comply with international data privacy and protection laws. But also users who visit this site are being tracked using cookies without their consent.
Below you can see that the website has two google analytics codes installed and one facebook pixel. So who has access to the Lebanese expats data and is the data protected?
So what is a cookie and what can we do with it?
Have you ever noticed that you recently visited a website and suddenly that becomes the focus of online ads following you on different websites? A cookie tracks your browsing behavior and can be set to be valid for any amount of time.
In a simple explanation, once you visit a website, I can target you with ads that show up on other websites across different devices. While Facebook can use the data collected to expand your current user base to “lookalike audience”. This helps you target people with similar likes, interests, and demographics to people who are already interacting with your website.
Example. I can actually launch a “Fake News” campaign on Facebook and target everyone who visited diasporavote.mfa.gov.lb with a certain advertising message. Then target those 90K who registered with another ad. I can also expand my campaign to those who didn’t visit the site but rather look similar, Lebanese living abroad on Facebook. “Fake News” can impact the results of the upcominh elections in Lebanon similar to what happened in the 2016 presidential election in the United States of America.
International laws for data protection should be applied in Lebanon even if its the government collecting the data.
Nevertheless, the ability of Lebanese expats to vote for the very first time is a great initiative launched by Minister Gebran Basil to hopefully succeed in changing the political situation in Lebanon