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4 minute read

Why Now is the Best Time for Singaporean SMEs to Embrace Tech

Covid-19 has significantly influenced the way companies operate due to the sudden changes in consumer behaviour and economic decline. Small companies that have gotten hit hard should consider a few changes to weather the storm.

Unlike MNCs who typically have deep pockets to help them weather storms, small companies have to get creative to survive the current economic climate. One way is by embracing technologies and digital transformation to service customers who demand fast, intuitive and seamless services. For businesses that want to hop on the digital bandwagon, here are two ways to get started and why it’s the best time for it.

1. Gain a competitive advantage with digital marketing

First, the purpose of digital marketing is to connect a business to potential customers, with more people turning their attention online for product searches and reviews. Some of the most common strategies to adopt include creating a well-executed website that is search engine optimised (SEO), providing regular updates on social media and sharing online materials such as videos, blogs and eBooks).

The goal is to help increase the visibility of your company. Good SEO will help you rank higher on Google, which increases visitors to your website. Social media marketing does the same thing but also helps you interact with current and potential customers.

2. Create an e-commerce presence to boost sales

Reportedly, global e-commerce expenses reached $4.73 trillion in 2019 and it won’t be surprising if this number continues to increase. For small retailers, embracing e-commerce to diversify revenue streams is a quick fix. Many local retailers have partnered up with online malls such as Lazada and Shopee for business continuity. Many restaurants and hawkers have also quickly tied up with food delivery platforms like FoodPanda, GrabFood and Deliveroo to reach more customers.

Additionally, with several grants offered by the government to help small businesses “Go Digital”, many SMEs are choosing to establish e-commerce shops.

Struggling to find suitable candidates for your job posting? The Suggested Talents feature on MyCareersFuture will find you a list of talents that you can consider and invite to apply for that role. Navigate to your job post on MyCareersFuture to try it out now.

Embracing digital initiatives can help with government grants

In an effort to help small businesses make the most of digital technologies to improve operations and generate new revenue, the Singapore government is offering several grant packages:

E-Commerce Booster Package

This comprehensive package comprises three programmes to help small businesses that are new to, or have little experience in, e-commerce to diversify revenue streams, enhance digital marketing capabilities and increase brand awareness. Eligible retailers are also entitled to 90% of cost funding (up to S$9,000).

The programmes provide support for local retailers who are targeting both local and overseas markets, as well as match-make retailers to solution providers who can assist in business expansion. Retailers can also apply for the Digital Marketing Programme to work with an approved digital marketing partner to execute at least one digital marketing campaign and receive one-time funding of up to 90% of the qualifying manpower costs for three months.

Productivity Solution Grant (PSG)

The grant covers sector-specific solutions for businesses in retail, food, logistics, precision engineering, construction and landscaping. It also supports initiatives related to customer management, data analytics, financial management and inventory tracking. The grant allows companies to receive up to 80% of funding support for costs such as pre-scoped solutions like online collaboration tools (such as laptops and Microsoft Office 365), virtual meeting and telephony tools, queue management systems and temperature screening solutions.

Start digital pack

This grant helps small businesses that are new to using digital technology to start their journey with the right foundational digital tools. Eligible businesses can take up two digital solutions that run for at least 18 months and the grant will cover the costs for a minimum of six months.

You’ll also be eligible to receive bonuses

Another reason to adopt digital initiatives is that the government is offering cash bonuses to companies that embrace digital solutions. The Digital Resilience Bonus provides additional support to the Food Services and Retail sectors seeking to upgrade their digital capabilities. This bonus allows eligible businesses to receive a payout of up to $10,000 when they adopt the pre-defined categories of digital solutions.

Stepping up the digital efforts

With the current economic climate and government incentives to upgrade, small businesses should swiftly embrace digital transformation. The strategic move is bound to improve revenue, brand equity and productivity.

Not getting enough job applicants?

Act now by inviting candidates to apply for your job post!
Here’s how to use “Suggested Talents” on MyCareersFuture:

  • Log in to MyCareersFuture with your Singpass
  • Navigate to your existing job post, and click on ‘Suggested Talents’ (next to ‘Applicants’)
  • Browse the list of talents, shortlist the best ones, then invite them to apply for that job by clicking on ‘invite to apply’

That’s it! Try it for yourself now at MyCareersFuture.

This article is contributed by ValueChampion Singapore.


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