MYOB and PayPal have launched a new initiative enabling small businesses to set up a website and begin accepting payments within an hour, in a bid to cash in on the growth of eCommerce.
As an extension of MYOB’s Getting Aussie Business Online initiative, the new features of the MYOB Atlas product allow small businesses to launch an eCommerce-enabled site at no cost.
The service is free for the first 12 months and takes less than an hour to set up. PayPal, which has partnered with MYOB, will act as the payment service provider.
The program allows users to customise their website with a logo or banner, add a newsfeed, and link to social networking sites to increase their ability to sell products and services online.
Websites will soon be linked with MYOB’s cloud-based business platform, which is still a work in progress, giving businesses access to its accounting software.
The service is supported by a learning centre and community forum, where entrepreneurs can exchange ideas about ways in which to improve their sites.
The partnership puts both companies at the forefront of small businesses owners’ minds with regard to eCommerce, which continues to stump small businesses throughout the country.
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A recent report by the Federal Government, based on figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, reveals micro businesses continue to shy away from eCommerce strategies.
According to the report, the number of micro businesses with a website presence is in decline. Only 29% had a website presence in 2009-10, yet 31% had a website presence in 2008-09.
MYOB chief executive Tim Reed says the new initiative provides incentives for small businesses to establish an online presence and tap into global eCommerce growth.
In an overt attempt to cash in on the rise of eCommerce, Reed describes the service as an ideal “starter package” for businesses wanting to start selling online.
“By providing these businesses with the ability to be online and transactional within an hour, we believe we are removing the barriers holding some small businesses back,” Reed says.
Equally keen to grab a slice of the burgeoning eCommerce market is PayPal. Frerk-Malte Feller, managing director of PayPal Australia, highlights the “phenomenal” growth of online retail.
“Online retail is experiencing phenomenal growth at 12% year-on-year, with more and more local retailers recognising the need to… remain competitive,” he says.
“MYOB Atlas enables businesses to create a professional and appealing online retail experience with very little start-up investment and… immediately sell through their websites.”
MYOB and PayPal aren’t the only companies to take advantage of the growth of online shopping.
Earlier this week, tech giant Google announced its own initiative, aimed at helping small businesses create mobile-friendly sites.
“Every day, more and more of your customers are looking for you… on mobile devices. If you don’t have a site that works for mobile, you’re missing out,” a Google spokesperson said.