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Web technology to improve competitiveness of local tourism businesses

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The implementation team of the EU funded project “Business Skills Development and e-Business Incubators” has, over the past weeks, been intensifying its efforts to support the development of the SVG Tourism Sector.{{more}}

The project, implemented under the umbrella of the Ministry of Telecommunications, Science, Technology and Industry, has a mission to help local businesses become more effective and efficient through the use of technology.

The most recent outreach was implemented through an offensive targeting tourism-oriented businesses in the Grenadine islands – Union Island, Mayreau and Canouan. These businesses included hotels, guesthouses, retail outlets and restaurants, as well as craftsmen (painters, sculptors, original shoes makers), services providers for yachts and tour/transport operators. The goal was to target businesses that provide products and services to visitors, and increase their visibility and market presence regionally and internationally by leveraging the opportunities provided by the Internet. This online presence will pay dividends in the future by increasing the inflow of visitors and foreign capital into the country.

During the mission, the team educated the business owners about the many benefits of having their own web presence, and how to leverage the Internet to more effectively market their businesses worldwide.

The National e-Business Incubator awareness raising and consultation weeks were conducted by the project team in Union Island and Mayreau from November 30, 2009, to December 4, 2009, and in Canouan from January 5 to 8, 2010. Some 26 companies and businesses from these islands have benefited from assistance offered by the project team in the form of centralised consultation sessions and individual practical trainings (tutorials). Along with the training on professional e-mail communication, clients were supported in the development of their own websites and also received consultations on advanced topics such as search engine optimisation and more efficient ways to manage client data and achieve better marketing results. Our services include, among others, the interlinking of the clients’ websites with other internet-media targeting visitors of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and thus ensuring maximum of their visibility.

Businesses throughout Saint Vincent and the Grenadines have been making use of the services of the National e-Business Incubator since 2008 by simply signing up, free of charge, for the outreach programme. Currently, the project team is supporting businesses in the Cumberland Valley, Troumaca and Richmond areas, helping them to better target and service the yacht traffic that brings increased business opportunities to the communities of the North Leeward.

Additional information on this programme can be obtained at the project office, located on the Second Floor of the Singer Building, Lower Bay Street, Kingstown (Tel: +1 784 452 5599) or from our website: www.ict-gate.com.

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