The Importance Of Bringing Your Startup Online

Last Friday (30 January 2015), the US-ASEAN Business Alliance for Competitive SMEs held a workshop for improved market competitiveness at CJCC in RUPP. One of the key takeaways was from Google’s Ms. Ha Truong, on why going online matters for Cambodian businesses (and startups!).

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Ha Truong is a Business Analyst for Emerging Markets, and is one of the founding members of Google in Vietnam. Last week, she spoke about how online marketing can strengthen your small business.

To kick things off, she mentioned that more than 40% of the world’s population is connected to the Internet. 100 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute, and 1 billion unique users visit YouTube each month. There are currently more than 1.4 billion Internet users on social networks.

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According to MPTC’s numbers from 2014, there are 3.8 million Internet users in Cambodia. That essentially means that 1 out of 4 Cambodians are connected to the World Wide Web. Therefore, it is crucial to consider a channel that your consumers might be using more and more.

Ha Truong showcased Google’s statistics on the Search Query Demand Growth in Cambodia. From 2007 to 2014, it grew 47 times. That means people are more active in using online channels to find information, and shows how vital a role the Internet plays. To zero in on the type of device used, it seems that demand of users in Cambodia using mobile has outgrown that of PC in the last couple of years:

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In order to reach your consumers in these areas, you need to think about establishing a good connection with them. With so many devices and screens around us, it certainly is increasingly difficult to capture the consumer’s attention.

One way to effectively target your consumers would be to look at Internet trends. Ha Truong displayed Google’s trends regarding people who search about travelling in Cambodia. There is a clear pattern, where it goes up at the start of the year. Therefore, this could be a way to know how to promote and where to promote your message.

Ha Truong shared 4 steps for your startups seeking to go online, namely:

  1. Develop a website (with regular updates and useful content, as well as mobile friendly interface)

  2. Find potential target customers and markets

  3. Promote your website to these target audience

  4. Measure and optimise on a regular basis

Want to learn more about social media in Cambodia? Read our infographics here and here!