Google is planning to launch an app that will allow smaller Indian businesses a mobile-first presence without a domain name or even a website.
The app will allow SMEs an online presence in 15-20 minutes, Suryanarayana Kondukulla, head of SMB sales at Google India, told Business Standard.
“People come to Google to get information. With this app SMEs can get online presence, they will also find themselves on the Google Map. The entire process of getting online will be very simple,” he said.
“For a lot of Indians it is through mobile that they are using internet for the first time. Initially since the app is just for identifying a business in an area, we are not looking at an immediate conversion of this into ad revenues,” he added.
Creating a presence online through an app could well be the first option for many to get online and then based on their experience they can very well then create a website. Google has been significanlty scaling up its efforts to get SMEs online.
According to a study by Zinnov on behalf of Google, India has 100 million smartphone users in India and adds 5 million users every month. The study also found that engagement on mobile has been rising.
For the 48 million SMEs in India, about 10 million are technology ready and present in the top 15 cities of India and can immediately benefit from Internet. However, of these only 600,000 have websites and of this 100,000 are ready for active online activation. The need for SMEs to have mobile presence also steams from the fact that in the top 15 cities in India more than 70 per cent SME owners use internet through a mobile device for business.