Strategies for SMEs to Get Online Ready

Strategies for SMEs to Get Online Ready

To help SMEs transition to the online realm, here are strategies that can be implemented, including considering digital readiness, the ability to accept digital payments, and other important aspects relevant globally:

1. Commitment to Digital Readiness

A. Awareness and Education

  • Workshops and Training: Conduct regular workshops and training to increase awareness of the importance of digitization and its benefits for businesses.

  • Digital Literacy: Provide educational materials on the basics of digital technology, internet usage, and social media.

  • Case Studies: Showcase successful case studies of other SMEs that have successfully transformed digitally.

B. Digital Infrastructure

  • Internet Connectivity: Ensure stable and fast internet access. If necessary, provide recommendations for internet packages that suit business needs.

  • Technological Devices: Invest in technological devices such as computers, smartphones, and software that support digital business operations.

C. Support and Guidance

  • Mentorship: Provide mentors or digital consultants who can offer guidance and support.

  • Online Community: Build an online community for SMEs to share experiences and digital solutions.

2. Accepting Digital Payments

A. Integrated Payment Systems

  • E-wallets and Mobile Banking: Start by registering for popular e-wallet services and mobile banking.

  • Payment Gateway: Integrate payment gateways into your website or e-commerce platform to facilitate online transactions.

B. Education and Socialization of Digital Payments

  • Usage Training: Conduct training on how to use and manage digital payments.

  • Information to Customers: Publicize to customers that your business accepts digital payments through social media, websites, and physical stores if applicable.

C. Transaction Security

  • Data Security: Implement robust security systems to protect customer data and transactions. Use SSL certificates for websites and ensure compliance with security standards such as PCI DSS.

  • Fraud and Risk: Educate SMEs about the risks and prevention methods for digital transaction fraud.

3. Online Marketing and Sales

A. Online Presence

  • Professional Website: Build a professional and user-friendly website as an information and transaction center.

  • Marketplace and E-commerce: Utilize marketplace platforms to reach more customers.

B. Social Media Strategy

  • Business Accounts: Create business accounts on major social media platforms.

  • Engaging Content: Create engaging and relevant content, such as high-quality product photos, product demo videos, and customer testimonials.

  • Paid Advertising: Utilize paid advertising on social media to increase business visibility and reach.

C. Customer Service

  • Customer Support: Provide responsive customer service through chat, email, or social media.

  • Feedback and Reviews: Encourage customers to provide feedback and reviews to enhance trust and credibility.

4. Online Delivery Services

A. Partnerships with Delivery Service Providers

  • Delivery Services: Partner with delivery service providers to ensure products can be delivered quickly and efficiently.

  • Integration of Delivery Systems: Integrate delivery systems with e-commerce platforms to facilitate management and tracking of deliveries.

B. Socialization to Customers

  • Delivery Information: Inform customers about available delivery options through websites and social media.

  • Delivery Promotions: Offer special promotions for free or discounted delivery to attract more customers.

5. Understanding Regulations and Local Laws

A. Compliance with Regulations

  • Business Licensing: Ensure your business has all necessary licenses to operate legally.

  • Tax and Taxation: Understand and comply with applicable tax regulations for online businesses.

B. Consumer Protection

  • Return and Refund Policies: Establish clear and fair return and refund policies to build customer trust.

  • Price Transparency: Ensure all price information, including taxes and additional fees, is transparent to customers.

6. Collaboration with Government and Local Agencies

A. Government Programs

  • Assistance and Subsidies: Take advantage of government assistance and subsidy programs to support the digitization of SMEs.

  • Training and Mentoring: Participate in training and mentoring programs provided by government and local agencies to improve digital skills.

B. Collaboration with Educational Institutions

  • Internships and Research Collaborations: Partner with universities and educational institutions for internship programs and research collaborations that can support digital innovation for SMEs.

7. Optimizing the Use of Local Language and Culture

A. Local Content

  • Local Language: Ensure all digital content, including websites, social media, and marketing materials, are available in the local language to reach more customers.

  • Cultural Adaptation: Adapt marketing strategies to local cultural values to better resonate with the target audience.

B. Local Customer Service

  • 24/7 Customer Service: Provide responsive customer service in the local language to ensure effective communication with customers.

  • Local Customer Support: Employ local staff for customer service to better understand local needs and preferences.

8. Empowering Local Communities and SMEs

A. Local Business Community

  • Local Business Networks: Join local business communities to share knowledge, experiences, and resources.

  • Local Events and Exhibitions: Participate in local events and exhibitions to increase business visibility and build networks.

B. Empowering Local SMEs

  • Collaboration with Other SMEs: Collaborate with other local SMEs for joint marketing campaigns and cross-promotion.

  • Empowerment Support: Participate in SME empowerment programs to help other local businesses grow digitally.

Implementation and Monitoring

  • Action Plan: Develop a clear action plan with implementation timelines for each of the above steps.

  • Monitoring and Evaluation: Monitor progress and evaluate performance regularly. Use analytics tools to measure the effectiveness of strategies and make adjustments as needed.

Practical Implementation Examples

  • Digitalization Workshops: Conduct monthly workshops covering topics such as e-wallet usage, SEO basics, and social media marketing.

  • E-commerce Onboarding: Assist SMEs in registering and setting up online stores on e-commerce platforms and integrating payment gateways.

  • Socialization of Digital Payments: Launch social media campaigns educating customers about accepted digital payment methods and their security.


With the right strategies, SMEs can digitally transform, improve operational efficiency, and expand their market reach. Commitment to digital readiness and the ability to accept digital payments lay a strong foundation for embarking on this journey.


  • Digital Transformation for SMEs: "Digital Transformation for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises" by Oliver Gassmann and Karolin Frankenberger.

  • Payment Systems in the Digital Age: "Payment Systems: Design, Governance and Oversight" by David B. Humphrey.

  • E-commerce and Social Media Marketing: "E-commerce 2020: Business, Technology, and Society" by Kenneth C. Laudon and Carol Guercio Traver.

  • E-commerce Regulations: "E-commerce Law in the Digital Age" by R. Wiyono.

  • SME Empowerment: "Empowering SMEs in the Digital Era" by Agus Riyanto.

  • Government Policies for SMEs: "Government Policies Supporting SMEs" by the Ministry of Cooperatives and SMEs.

Presented by - Feel free to share with attribution to as the original source.