Indian technology startups that cater to small businesses across the world are waking up to the potential at home, using mobile apps to tap the country’s numerous small and medium enterprises (SMEs) with offerings in areas such as search-engine optimisation and analytics.Proliferation of smartphones in India has made it possible for startups such as Nowfloats, Whatfix and Zoho, which count the US as their primary market, to gain a foothold in the largely untapped domestic SME sector through mobile applications, offering these firms basic features for free with an aim to turn them into paying cus tomers once they are hooked.
“We started with a search-en gine optimisa tion tool for SMEs but real ised that if they didn’t imple ment our sug gestions, there were no results. That’s when we made our first tool to handhold SMEs for implementing this and it evolved into a different suite, cofounder and chief executive of two-year-old startup Whatfix, which makes interactive how-to guides for the Web.
The company, which recently raised `. 5.5 crore, sees about 10% of its free users eventually pay for its analytics-enabled models.
Small businesses in India will look to spend ` . 71,300 crore on IT, especially in social media, mobile, analytics and cloud, offered as cloud-based freemium models, with options for running on mobile and pay per use.