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Google has launched a new free digital learning platform for companies as part of a “back to school” drive to help upskill business owners and their teams.

The Digital Garage Academy offers a series of how-to tutorials and real-life case studies to help businesses grow faster by appealing to customers who increasingly shop online.

A report by Deloitte shows over £11 billion has been generated for the UK economy by businesses, content creators and developers using Google services in the UK in 2014.

The report also showed that this economic activity supported over 210,000 jobs across multiple sectors of the British economy; highlighting the far-reaching economic impact technology-based services like Google have in propelling British success stories.

Eileen Naughton, managing director for Google UK & Ireland says: Google is a growth engine for British businesses large and small, helping them unlock their digital potential. Our technology helps companies be discovered by new customers, boosts productivity by helping teams collaborate better, and helps content creators get paid for their creativity.

“As people live their lives digitally, the traditional rules of doing business are changing and the opportunities for fast growth are powered by the web. Whether you are a start-up founder, a freelancer specialising on writing speeches, or a cup-cake enthusiast, Google can help you tap into the digital marketplace and serve customers across geographies.”

According to the Deloitte report, one way Google has contributed to the UK PLC is by boosting export-oriented British SMEs. Whilst thousands of businesses across the UK benefit for free through organic search, some enterprising small businesses are also seeing the potential of paid online advertising as search marketing services have helped lower the barriers to advertising.

Tools such as AdWords help British SMEs advertise their good and services at home and overseas without a big upfront cost.

The study estimated that for every £1 invested in online advertising, businesses receive £3.4 to £8 in gross advertising profits, while content creators who use Google’s YouTube or AdSense platforms generated over £55 million and £240 million in UK economic activity, respectively.

Google’s Android mobile operating system was also found to help open up the smartphone market, increasing competition and lowering device prices while also boosting the app developer ecosystem.

It estimated that 439,000 jobs across Europe are directly associated with Android app development, and more than £4 billion earned globally by app developers through revenue sharing agreements with Google.

In the UK, Google’s investment in Campus London has provided a first home for the growing community of mobile app entrepreneurs and start-ups, with 48,000 members using it’s free mentoring and co-working space services.

Google has also contributed to boosting UK’s digital skills and nurturing future talent by investing nearly £3 million in British organisations that support coding and technological education, since the start of 2013.

Furthermore, Google has pledged to train one million individuals across Europe in digital skills by 2016.

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