Made in Italy goes digital

Italy long has been famed for its quality of life, its fashion, its heritage and its food. We believe the Internet can help promote the Made in Italy lifestyle brand and the Google Cultural Institute has worked with the Italian Agriculture Ministry, Union of Chambers of Commerce, the University Ca' Foscarithe Symbola Foundation to launch an online platform designed to help bring Made in Italy online.

On the new platform, anybody, anywhere can discover hundreds of digital displays, stories, pictures, videos, and historical documents about Italian craftsmanship. Many of Italy’s most famous culinary and handcraft products are represented, from Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and Prosciutto di San Daniele ham to Murano glass and Montappone Hats. Little-known gems also can be uncovered such as Vercelli accordions and Ascoli Piceno lace.
Discover Montappone Hats
Many of the best Italian producers are small and medium sized, family-owned companies. They are homes to craftsmen who produce niche products. By bringing them online, we hope to help them export and reach global markets. Before, an American or Chinese buyer would have found it hard to obtain many of these Italian gems. With the new site, niche products no longer are forced into niche markets.

Online interest is growing in Italian “cultural” products. Google searches in these categories grew by 12 percent last year; fashion is the most searched category, followed by tourism and food. Even so, Made in Italy producers still lag with their digital activities: only 34 percent  of Italian SMEs have their own website and only 13 percent use it to do e-commerce.

Media partner Gruppo Editoriale L'Espresso, excited about the economic potential of the internet, dedicated an entire section to the project, focusing on examples of successful Italian entrepreneurs going digital. Savor this new digital platform - and encourage more and more Italian purveyors of the sweet life to benefit from the Internet.