Google on Wednesday announced the launch of an interface 'Google My Business' here to help Indian small and medium businesses (SMBs) succeed online.
Google said the new product, designed to work across both desktop and mobile devices (tablets and smart phones), will help small and medium businesses to create and update their business info on Google Search, Maps and Google+ from one place for free in both Hindi and English.
'Google My Business' makes it easier for business to create their online presence even when they don't have a website and manage it from their smartphones, making it
easier for customers to get in touch with local businesses when they search for them online, Google said.
"India is strategic market for Google and we are committed to invest in solutions that cater to the needs of SMBs in India," Google Head of Small and Medium Business Sales Suryanarayana Kodukulla told reporters here.
He said "Globally over 2 million businesses use Google's advertising platform to find potential buyers on internet. We have very ambitious plan of bringing down the barriers that inhibits SMBs in India from embracing the internet."
Stating that Google is also investing in extending deeper support services through a local partner network and local language call centers, he said that "in addition to this to tackle the challenge of lack of awareness around the benefits of internet we are partnering with CII to help create awareness amongst SMBs to accelerate the adoption of internet".
Speaking about the growth of internet in India, Kodukulla said, "India is now the third largest internet market...to get the first hundred million internet users it took ten years, but the second hundred million came in the span of two years that was pretty fast, more interesting thing is in the next one one-and-half years we will get the next hundred million users."
Kodukulla said, "This means in the next year we will possibly be the second largest internet market after China, even overtaking the US. That's really fast..."
Google also announced the shortlisted five finalists of Google SME Heroes-Bangalore that includes Simplilearn CEO Krishna Kumar, Portea Co-founders Ganesh Krishnan and Meena Ganesh, Zoffio Founder Abhishek Kamani, HiFives Founder Sagar Chaudhuri and Savaari Founder Gaurav Agarwal.
This initiative aims to showcase and celebrate local small medium businesses that have embraced the internet to grow their business. As a national campaign five finalists in each major city of India will be shortlisted who will then be invited to the national capital for a mega SMB event where four regional and one national winner will be announced, Google said.