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It’s good for us, it’s good for you.  This is the message that Google UK managing director Matt Brittin is hoping to drive home to retailers and firms throughout United Kingdom.  While businesses here spend a higher percentage of their budgets on internet marketing, including pay-per-click campaigns, than their US counterparts, Google wants to entice more companies online.  Brittin and Google are targeting the 1.5 million businesses that have yet to create a website and aim to get at least 100,000 more of these latecomers online.

Brittin manages Google’s second largest market and was quite candid about the search giant’s interest in giving UK businesses a virtual face.  He told the Scotland Herald, “Google makes its money from advertising.  I want more Scottish businesses to set up their websites, so they too can drive more business: that way we can both make more money.  Their success equals our success.”  In conjunction with partners, including the City of Edinburgh, Google is offering owners and managers of small and medium businesses a tool which would allow them to create a functioning website in under a half hour.

It is time well spent: the average UK online shopper spends three times more than his American counterpart, and the faltering economy has even increased the level at which we are buying on the internet because more people are researching and comparing costs before they purchase.  Another reason for creating websites and making them ecommerce-friendly, as cited by Brittin, is the growing smartphone market and the opportunity that comes along with it for Scottish business people.  “If you think the internet has changed the world – you ain’t seen nothing yet because the internet in your pocket completely changes your day-to-day life.”

In an interview with the Daily Telegraph, Britton said,“Between 25% and 30% of consumers use their mobiles to access the internet.  But in three years time analysts believe more people will be accessing it from their mobiles than from a desktop. That’s a massive change.”  Spending on mobile advertising, too, will see a massive increase in the coming years, tripling from $2.2 billion to $7.7 billion in four years.  Smartphone users typically conduct more localized searches, which is good for area businesspeople.  Missing out on the opportunity afforded by the internet will put those who remain unconnected at a tremendous disadvantage.

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