Google Philippines has launched its MSME Caravan campaign under the grow with google program which aims to teach micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) digital skills and introduce tools that will help them become more competitive, grow and grab the opportunity of the rising online economy.
The campaign is made in partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and involves nationwide tours throughout 2020 to conduct training sessions to MSME owners so they can be up to date with the digital landscape, latest consumer insights, and tools such as Google My Business and the Primer App which can help create a positive impact in their business.
“The Department of Trade and Industry is committed to spur the MSME development in the country and our partnership with Google helps us achieve this goal. We hope that our joint digital upskilling program will help more MSMEs become competitive, engage with consumers effectively, and drive business growth,” said DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez in a statement.
“With a giant like Google behind us, I think we could be able to really reach our goal and even beyond, the 100,000 MSMEs to go online, to go digital this year,” said Blesila Lantayona, Undersecretary, DTI.
According to DTI, 99.52 percent of the country’s establishments are MSMEs which employs 63 percent of the local workforce. These MSMEs are also responsible in generating 25 percent of the nation’s total export revenue.
“This partnership with DTI is very important for us. In fact, with the help of DTI, we will be able to reach and to get more MSMEs to be part of this campaign. We hope that through this campaign, we will be able to teach them the needed digital skills for them to scale and become globally competitive,” said Bernadette Nacario, country director, Google Philippines.
According to Google the number of searches for products, stores, and services “near me” have increased by 2.5x in the last three year from 2017 to 2019. The MSME Caravan campaign aims to train business owners on how they can be listed in Google My Business so they can be discovered by consumers searching online.
The series of workshops have already started, training more than 2,780 MSME owners in over 20 cities in eight regions nationwide. Google and DTI hope to reach more throughout 2020.
“We’ve been to more than 20 cities in eight regions, we’ve trained 2700 MSMEs already. And that number keeps on increasing. And we’re very, very proud to be contributing to your objective of training 100,000 small businesses now, not only train them, and of course bringing them online,” said Samuel Jeanblanc, market lead, Google Philippines.
Google My Business is a free online listing on Google Maps and Google Search to help MSMEs connect with more consumers in the digital space. It also helps businesses build their online presence, control their business information, and create a free website and posts for their business. It has bookings, direct contact, reviews, and even Q and A pages, as well as an insights feature which helps business to understand and know their customers better.
Aside from the Google My Business, MSMEs Caravan attendees will also be taught how to use the Primer App, a free mobile app that teaches digital marketing skills. The teaching app is available to download on the Google Play Store or iOS App Store and will provide business owners with important insights on how they can expand and utilize the digital space for marketing.
As part of the official launch of the campaign, Google brought three MSMEs who have started to digitalize their business through Google’s tools. Michelle Mariano owner of QMansi, Gerome Panlilio owner of Germano Chili, and Beltran Almendral owner of Anito’s Dried Pork shared how Google and the DTI have helped upscale their businesses through the use of the internet.