For the first time, the IE Domain Registry (IEDR)’s OPTIMISE e-commerce programme is now open to businesses with no previous web presence.
The managed registry for .ie web addresses, IEDR has so far helped 60 SMEs and micro-business owners with consultation, training and e-commerce development support, including tailored e-tools and features, to “optimise” their existing online presence and grow their business via the Internet.
This year 15 more businesses will receive similar help through the scheme.
“IEDR is proud to have helped 60 small firms to embrace e-commerce and find their niche online,” says David Curtin, chief executive of IEDR.
“Now in its fifth year, OPTIMISE is evolving too and we are excited to extend our support to offline businesses for the first time. I’d strongly encourage SMEs to take a leap of faith, apply for a place and let IEDR help them to realise their online potential this year.”
€6bn is spent online by Irish consumers annually, meaning operating outside this sphere can prove costly. Curtin claims OPTIMISE helps by identifying the right tools and technologies for each individual applicant, helping each company to find a way forward in the online world.
Considering SMEs face restraints in time, resources and knowledge areas, projects like this can offer significant help.
“With online shopping entering the mainstream for Irish consumers there’s never been a better time for small firms to be e-commerce ready,” he says.
“It’s something that Irish companies have remained worryingly slow to do, yet the 2014 OPTIMISE winners have strong results to show from taking small steps towards long-term improvements in their e-commerce capability.”
Online business image, via Shutterstock