NEW DELHI: The demand for digital presence amongst Small and Micro Businesses (SMBs) in Covid-19 is driving a positive sentiment for India’s web professionals, says a survey by Endurance International Group (EIG), according to a release.
Web professionals collectively include web designers, developers, digital agencies, IT service providers, and any business that helps other businesses get an online presence. The pan India survey covered 200 web professionals. EIG is the parent company of web presence brands like HostGator, Bluehost, ResellerClub, and BigRock.
“India is primarily a DIFM (do-it-for-me) market and web professionals are playing a key role in the digital discoverability journey of SMBs (Small & Micro Businesses). EIG is focused on delivering and supporting the business needs of web professionals by providing dedicated servers, virtual private servers, as it empowers them to help small businesses come online,” said Manish Dalal, senior vice president & GM, Endurance APAC, as quoted in the release.
According to the survey, 54% of web professionals added up to a quarter of their new clients amid Covid-19. Nearly 6% said that they had added nearly half of their total clients in the last few months. They are witnessing the highest jump in demand for clients in the educational services segment (26%) followed by technology segment (16%). The demand is in sync with the upward trend of small businesses increasing their usage of digital/Internet tools to continue engagement with customers while ensuring social distancing.
As per the survey, demand from SMBs is the highest for website development services (54%), e-commerce integration (49%), Custom built web and mobile apps (46%) and social media marketing (35%).
This demand for digital services is coming not only from the top tier cities but also Tier 2 and 3 towns such as Chandigarh, Nagpur, Kochi, Patna, Haridwar and Darjeeling. While 63% of web professionals cite demand for their services from Tier 1 cities, 50% are witnessing demand from Tier 2 and 3 cities also. This demand is primarily for English language websites. Web professionals say that demand for local content websites is relatively low. About 30% of web professionals claim they see some demand for vernacular content and local language website creation services.
Digital transformation by SMBs has traditionally lagged behind the expected growth curve. As per Zinnov Consulting, out of the 75 million SMBs based in India, 16-18 million have a social media presence, an online listing or a website. Out of 5 million domain names registered in India, only half have a website behind them.
“Digital maturity for SMBs has accelerated during the pandemic. As more and more businesses take ownership of their digital presence, opportunities for India’s web professionals will continue to swell,” added Dalal.