As consumer trends fluctuate and digital adoption widens, micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) must maintain a learning mindset to remain competitive, according to an official from Grab Philippines.

Trisha P. Katipunan, Grab Philippines’ platform training manager, said on the sidelines of the company’s Merchant Masterclass on Wednesday that MSMEs primarily face challenges with bookkeeping and digitalization.

Many merchants struggle to track expenses effectively to maximize profits, she said, citing a Grab study.

Merchants are eager to understand how they can increase their earnings, thrive, and enhance their business acumen, particularly in the context of digitalization and evolving consumer demands, she added.

Ms. Katipunan also noted that small businesses must employ a strategic approach to leverage their digital capabilities, especially when faced with limited capital.

“You really have to do your homework and study the specific needs of your market,” she said. “You don’t always have to spend on running ads; instead, you can learn from how other successful players are approaching their strategies.”

She also emphasized the wealth of learning opportunities from successful industry peers.

“At the core of it is the fundamental knowledge of establishing a strong online presence, especially on social media, as it is the quickest way to market your brand today,” Ms. Katipunan said.

On business teams, she said that they represent the most significant investment for business owners. She noted the importance of having a team that understands and aligns with the company’s mission and vision.

Ms. Katipunan also mentioned the availability of online learning tools, in-person masterclasses, quick loans, and ad packages within Grab’s support ecosystem to aid MSMEs. — Miguel Hanz L. Antivola