SMEs encouraged for digital presence

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Stephen Essien

The Director for Tigo Business, Stephen Essien, has advised Ghanaian businesses to establish an online presence and move beyond mere connectivity to creating a digitalised small and medium enterprise (SME) market.

This he said would enable it to attract new customers and improve on customer convenience.

At a meeting with various SME businesses in Accra, he revealed that like most developing countries, Ghana’s SME market was a key factor in driving the development agenda as it makes up 92 per cent of the enterprise market and currently contributes roughly 70 per cent to GDP.

He said despite these promising numbers, factors such as the challenging macro-economic landscape and inability to adopt a digital economy continue to hamper growth.

The Tigo Business Director encouraged SMEs to unlock their growth potential by digitising their services.

This he believes would transform how they do business in three ways – by widening their market size, improving customer experience and increasing employee productivity.

Highlighting the first benefit, Mr. Essien advised SMEs to get their business online to increase market size, become more agile and to make the most of new opportunities.

“The internet allows for the elimination of geographic barriers to reach a wider and more diverse audience.  Although simply building a website will not guarantee increased business, if it is marketed appropriately it can become a viable channel to reach new and existing customers,” he said.

Mr. Essien said businesses could also make use of search engine optimisation tools to ensure their website is listed among top search results as this would drive traffic to their websites.

“Internet marketing has also proven to be more affordable, effective and more targeted than traditional marketing because every day, more and more Ghanaians are using the internet to find products and services they want to patronise,” he said.

“Through digital access, SMEs are also able to interact with customers online, video chat with suppliers, staff and customers, have sales staff connected with devices in store, share information securely across departments and stores, and even offer customers free WIFI in their stories,” he added.

Tigo Business he said had invested in a number of tools and solutions to help businesses widen their access to market.

“They include advanced services like VPN over mobile, cloud computing and dedicated internet services through several hundreds of thousands of kilometers of fibre network underlying the country’s major cities which has vast resources that businesses can tap into,” he said.

By Times Reporter

 

 

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