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‘Indian SMEs are Becoming More Agile’

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By Faiz Askari, Founder SMEStreet & ReviewStreet

In India, times are changing and the industry is witnessing major transformations. SMEs are graduating from one level to another. Technology has become the main carrier of such multipronged transformation. Be it ecommerce, customer engagement, marketing, sales processes, employee engagements, market intelligence etc., everywhere technology is gaining momentum.

Discussing the status of SMEs in India and particularly status of ecommerce among Indian SMEs, in an exclusive conversation with Faiz Askari of SMEStreet, Mr. Satya Prabhakar, CEO and Founder of unleashed some key insights and findings.

Here is an edited excerpts of the interaction:

Faiz Askari: How do you look at the SME sector from the perspective of their technology consumption?

Satya Prabhakar: There are three very distinct changes in the market, one is the consumption of data and technology by SME’s with the advent of smartphones and access to data a lot of SME’s are becoming very comfortable in using smart phones, number two there are multiple options they always had in solving their biggest problem and their biggest problem/challenge is how to get more business, how to grow their business and get proper customers. Most of the mediums that are available offline are very expensive for SME’s and are untargeted. Platforms such as Sulekha that are offering pay-for-performance kind of advertising helps in providing with a minimum level entry fee like for a thousand rupees they can start advertising to grow their business.

Also Read: Sulekha won Best Mobile App Award

Faiz: What are the key trends in the SME domain on the consumption or usage of technology?

SMEs are becoming more agile towards their customers. The marketing and sales processes are becoming far more direct and transparent. As an online marketplace we are experiencing this shift and committed towards the segment.

Faiz: How is social media becoming, do you see an integration of big data in the ecommerce domain? What are the key technologies that are driving this?

Satya: Sulekha is a digital matchmaking platform that connects the user with the right service provider for local services. We use a lot of big data analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence to understand the user requirements and to isolate and connect with the right service provider and user. For this we compile about 5 million data points that we use to be able to communicate with the users and service providers. I feel that big data is a huge competitive enabler. Currently we have over 55,000 active service providers across the country who are live on our platform and each of them are on different categories and cities and also we have users across the country, so it is difficult for us to enable our business without technology and big data as it’s difficult to run an effective business model without these.

Faiz: How many registered service partners do you have in India?

Satya: We have over 55, 000 thousand service providers and we focus only on services not on products. Our focus is on businesses that provide services.

Faiz: What kind of end user specific queries are you receiving on your platform?

Satya: We get over 2 crore requests through the platform per year and it has been growing with 30 to 40% year by year.



SMEStreet Desk

SMEStreet is fast growing platform dedicated to entrepreneurs from small and medium sized businesses (SMEs). Committed to facilitate Knowledge & Networking for Business Growth, SMEStreet offers value added content which shows the actual voice of Indian MSMEs.

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