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Bukalapak and Google partner up to empower Indonesian ‘warungs’ to digitise

Indonesian eCommerce unicorn Bukalapak has partnered Google to drive digitalisation among Indonesian micro SMEs (MSMEs) or more commonly known as warungs in the country. The collaboration will help warungs on the company’s wholesale platform, Mitra Bukalapak onboard to Google My Business.

The move will allow Mitra Bukalapak warungs to appear on Google search results, including Google Maps, and gain more traction and exposure. For example, when users search for items with keywords such as “frozen food”, the nearest Mitra Bukalapak warung will appear in the search result, along with the description and location of the business. Currently, 95,000 warungs have created their Google My Business profiles in the Mitra Bukalapak App.

The partnership is expected to help modernise traditional warungs, said a press release. It comes on the back of the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology’s report, which shows that only 16.33% or 9.61 million out of 58.9 million MSMEs in Indonesia have adopted digital technology in their business practices.

Bukalapak co-founder and president Fajrin Rasyid said the company is the first Indonesian marketplace to launch the initiative with Google My Business. The initiative is also in line with Bukalapak’s mission to improve the MSMEs’ well-being through the adoption of technology.

“The partnership does not only facilitate the internet users to find the nearest warung location, but could also increase the volume of warung transactions. At the same time, the programme could educate the warung owners about the importance of digital technology and upskilling to compete in a highly competitive market,” he added.

According to head of Google My Business partnerships APAC, Marcel In’t Veen, a Google My Business profile on Search and Maps can generate five times more views when regularly updated and help MSMEs helps attract new customers. He said: “MSMEs play a vital role in local search. Google My Business is an easy way for them to create an online storefront and be found when users search for local warung on Google.”

Moving forward, Bukalapak will be encouraging more warung owners to join Google My Business through the Mitra Bukalapak app. They can have their warungs registered by following simple steps through the “business promotion” feature and filling in the details such as store name, address, photo and operational hours.

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