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Google to help Thai SMEs



Google has joined with the Commerce Ministry and Sripatum University to encourage SMEs to go online to reach more customers around the world with the use of Google AdWords.

 

The collaboration aims to help SMEs turn the

Internet into a vital marketing tool that can enhance

their competitiveness at lower marketing cost during

the downturn.

Only 10 per cent of the million SMEs in the country

have set up websites as their online marketing chan¬

nel.

And only a thousand of them are already employ¬

ing Google Adwords to promote their business.

"Therefore, we want to push more SMEs to get the

most benefits from Google Adwords," Pornthip

Kongchun, marketing manager for Thailand at Google

Southeast Asia, said yesterday.

With AdWords, the SMEs' advertising pops up next

to search results when people search on Google

using one of the SMEs' keywords.

The beauty of AdWords is SMEs can extend their

market to cover the globe 24 hours a day, seven days

a week at less cost.

Especially, they can advertise to the right target.

"Now you are advertising to an audience that's

already interested in you," Pornthip said.

Google provides SMEs that already have websites

and sign up with AdWords, Bt2,500 in credit to use

Google AdWords free of charge so they can start

online advertising immediately.

Once an Internet user clicks on an SME's adver¬

tisement, that SME's credit will be reduced by a mini¬

mum Bt1.

After their credit is used up, SMEs will have to pay

Google a certain charge for the cost of using the

AdWords service.

To take advantage of the Bt2,000 credit offer,

SMEs have to apply to the project at

www.google.co.th/sme2009 by October 31.

SMEs without a homepage can also apply to this

programme at www.google.co.th/sme2009 to get

help in designing and developing an e-commerce

website as well as related training from Sripatum

University.

The first 400 SMEs registering will get the training

and website for free.

Rutchaneeporn Pookayaporn Phukkamarn, presi¬

dent of Sripatum University, said the university had

budgeted Bt1.4 million for its part in providing free

websites and training to the first SMEs.

"If you're not in the first 400 companies, we will

charge the low cost of only Bt2,500 to Bt3,000 each,"

he said.

The Commerce Ministry will provide its list of

SMEs to the project and will approach SMEs across

industries to convince them to join the project.



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