Du-Google Partnership Aims To Bolster UAE SMEs

Research shows that out of the 200,000 SMEs in the UAE, only 10 per cent have an online presence.



Du has announced the launch of a new business plan, in partnership with Google, to help boost the online presence of small and medium entreprises (SMEs) in the UAE.

The new Business Super 600-G plan will enable SMEs to have a better and more relevant reach online via Google’s AdWords platform.

AdWords enable businesses to advertise their products and services exactly at a time when customers are looking for them. Du’s super business plan falls under Google AdWords Premier SMB programme where small businesses receive training on how to set up an account and monitor it.

Du’s launch comes at a time when the UAE’s digital marketplace is growing.

According to research by du, only 10 per cent of the 200,000 SMEs in the UAE have an online presence.

“It is very important to have an online presence today as 71 per cent of all purchases made in the country were researched online,” said Mohamad Mourad, regional manager-Gulf, Google.

He said that smartphone penetration in the region has led to a rise in online activity, and SMEs are yet to cash in on this opportunity.

“What we are trying to do is to bridge that gap and help SMEs to increase their online presence with a trusted partner,” said Mourad.

Vikram Chadha, senior vice president, marketing at du said that SMEs lack the time and resources to explore their online opportunities.

“SMEs need a solution that will provide them with better reach, make their presence relevant to online users and provide a return on investment,” he said.

Chadha said that location is increasingly playing an important role in online searches and SMEs can widen their marketing reach online through their visibility in virtual space.

“78 per cent of customers are using location-based maps and one in five desktop searches and one in three smartphone searches are related to location,” said Chadha.

He also said that there are chances of du hiring more staff if the new business plan achieves its target. Currently du is expecting to have around 600 customers in two years for the plan.

Business Super 600-G is a part of du’s business super family plan launched in 2010.