UK-wide competition from Google promotes website creation among SMEs

As part of a promotional campaign to encourage small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) to set up their own websites, internet search engine giant Google has helped publicise one of the winners of its new competition to find the best such sites in the UK.

The competition, launched for the first time this year, and promoted under the banner ‘Best of British Web’, was reportedly conceived by Google in response to a recent survey by research specialists, IPSOS, showing that 40% of small businesses in the UK have no website at all.

‘Best of British Web’ was designed to demonstrate the effectiveness of websites as a marketing tool, with Google claiming that a website can help a small business grow four times faster than would otherwise be the case.

The competition was divided into seven different industry categories: travel; transport; business to business services; health and beauty; hospitality; retail; and manufacturing. The winning websites were chosen by a professional panel, looking at qualities such as user friendliness, web design, and content.

One of the category winners, luxury travel company, Sheepskin, conceded that its website had helped it reach a ‘huge market’, and had also enabled it to take advantage of search engine optimisation (SEO) and social media to promote itself to ‘the right audiences’.

Commenting on Sheepskin’s success, a Google spokesperson said:

“It really demonstrates how the use of online marketing can make a big difference to the number of users visiting your website. We hope that their success will inspire others to make the most of the internet.”