'Digital Unlocked', Google says, would ensure that every small business that wants to go digital would have access to quality online and offline training. Photograph: (AFP)
According to a KPMG - Google study, nearly 68% of the 51 million small and medium businesses in India are currently offline
Google chief executive Sundar Pichai who is in New Delhi currently, launched 'Digital Unlocked', a training program to empower small and medium businesses (SMBs) in India to enable them to bring their businesses online.
He was addressing a gathering of SMBs entrepreneurs in the capital.
'Digital Unlocked' is "a training program to empower SMBs with digital skills to enable them to get online and start using the power of the Internet to grow their business," Google said in a press release.
According to a KPMG - Google study titled 'Impact of Internet and digitisation on SMBs in India', 68% of the 51 million small businesses in India are offline. The study said that increasing digital penetration of these companies could raise their contribution to the GDP by 10 percentage points.
'Digital Unlocked', Google says, would ensure that every small business that wants to go digital would have access to quality online and offline training. The training program has been developed for the online, offline and mobile platforms.
The offline training would be carried out in partnership with FICCI over the next three years, conducting 5000 workshops across 40 cities in the country.
The online training would have 90 self-paced video tutorials curated specifically for India and available for free. The tutorials would cover a wide range of topics including 'building web presence' and 'driving online growth'.
Mobile tutorial - Primer app
Google also launched a free mobile app to teach digital marketing skills on Wednesday. The app is available in the Google Play and iOS app store. The app can work offline and is available in English and Hindi. Google will make tutorials in Tamil and Telugu and Marathi versions available soon.
My Business Websites
Google also previewed My Business Websites to help small businesses create "a free mobile, optimised website". My Business Websites would be available in English, Hindi, Bengali, Telugu, Marathi, Tamil, Urdu, Gujarati, Kannada, and Malayalam.
(This report first appeared in DNA)