Has your SME embraced online marketing?
Can you see the benefits and huge potential of trading and engaging online with your customer base? If you are already one of those businesses who have seen the light, then you might be surprised to learn that you’re part of what appears to be an elite vanguard. According to Lloyds Bank UK Business Digital Index many small businesses are yet to experience this digital epiphany, and would rather stick with traditional marketing methods. However, Lloyds claims those businesses who fail to embrace the age of internet marketing because of their technology blind spots are running the risk of sacrificing business growth.
The Lloyds Bank UK Business Digital Index/ Accenture survey is a new comprehensive research study based on the analysis of data from just under 2,000 Lloyds’ small businesses, charities, clubs and societies Lloyds’ customers. The report claims there is a positive correlation between digital maturity and SMEs’ confidence in their business.
So what do the figures say?
Well, they’re actually quite shocking. Almost a third of the small businesses surveyed said they felt being online was ‘irrelevant’ for their business, whilst only half of SMEs surveyed had a website. Those who were already trading or engaging online only provided basic functionality to their customers, whilst a third of businesses admitted to lacking basic online skills and refused to invest in improving them. The regions with the most SMEs lacking basic online skills were the North West (38 per cent), followed by the East Midlands (35 per cent) and Yorkshire and Humberside (34 per cent). However, perhaps the most surprising insight to come out of the survey was that in spite of the overwhelming information to the contrary, a third of SMEs believed they were already doing all they could to maintain and improve their digital presence.
Speaking about the Lloyds Bank/ Accenture survey, Miguel-Angel Rodriguez-Sola, director for digital, marketing and customer development at Lloyds Banking Group, said:
“Most businesses do use digital technology in some shape or form. However there is a real blind spot for many firms who are doing the basics but can’t see the benefits of doing more.”
“Businesses that are willing to invest for the long term could reap huge rewards from digital technology. Some of the benefits are quick wins, but businesses that really do focus on making digital technology a priority may even find that they can capitalise more easily on growth opportunities and that their confidence continues to rise.”