33 MSME reps complete course in e-commerce

THE second batch of the e-commerce mentorship program composed of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in Central Visayas will graduate on June 14 at the Grand Convention Center in Cebu City.

At least 33 MSMEs from Cebu, Bohol, Siquijor, and Negros Oriental received mentorship from e-commerce practitioner Janette Toral in the program initiated by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

For roughly two months, participants learned about website creation, product writing and photography, customer relationship management, and website payment procedures.

In addition, they also took classes in e-mail marketing, search engine optimization and social media management, as well as blogging for business.

DTI Cebu Provincial Director Maria Elena Arbon said the second staging of the e-commerce mentorship is an offshoot of the first one launched in November 2016, which produced 16 Cebu-based MSME graduates in January 2017.

This time, DTI invited entrepreneurs from neighboring provinces in Central Visayas to take part in the mentorship program.

In previous interviews, Toral said this DTI-led e-commerce mentorship will support the government’s thrust to have more entrepreneurs in the digital economy.

Toral, who helped craft the DTI’s Philippine E-commerce Roadmap 2016–2020, said that the roadmap targets to have 100,000 MSMEs in the country to go into e-commerce three years from now.

More importantly, she said that e-commerce mentorship program allows businesses to scale up and tap wider markets in the digital sphere, reaching both Filipino and foreign consumers.

Online property listing firm Lamudi recently shared in its 2017 Real Estate Market Report that there will be 46 million Filipino internet users by the end of this year, from 23 million in 2010.

The numbers, said Lamudi, are driven by the sharp increase in the use of smartphones.
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