Monday, November 20, 2006

What South African entrepreneurs can expect from broadband

Is the South African business infrastructure about change in a big way or is all the hype about broadband simply another sales ploy from the large telecoms companies?

In many ways and if figures from first world countries can be believed, broadband certainly will play a large part in leveling the playing field most of the sectors where knowledge and information drive competitiveness and profitability.

The boom in the sme sector in many countries has been attributed to the ease, low cost and breakdown of barriers to entry provided by the availability of broadband technology.

Some of the ways that small firms may benefit are:

1)Geographic location becomes less important so firms in small towns and remote areas where salaries, property and transportation costs are low can now compete.

2) Infrastructure cost savings will equate to lower cost and lower prices for the end user.

3) Start-up costs are lower and hence the risk of starting becomes much lower.

4) Online training and elearning can be used to access high value low cost training and support for small business employees.

5) As online products and services become more popular, SEO and online advertising becomes more important. Although the small firm will still not be able to compete with he big budget advertising of large firms, entrepreneurs with the right skills and experience can gain valuable exposure through online marketing.

6) New employment opportunities will emerge resulting from new technology.

In addition my argument is supported by this article in the Business Times.

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