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BizReport : Advertising archives : May 04, 2016

Reports: Online crucial for SMBs

Two new reports out this week underline the importance of the Internet for small businesses. According to data from VistaPrint 1 in 3 consumers 'are unlikely' to shop with a small business that doesn't have a website.

by Kristina Knight

The web is becoming even more important for small businesses. That's the takeaway from reports out from VistaPrint and Toluna, which indicate shoppers are more likely to shop SMBs that have an online presence.

First, VistaPrint's survey found that 75% of consumers are shopping SMBs at least monthly, but that one-third of those 'are unlikely' to buy from SMBs that don't also have a website, and that 45% 'are unlikely' to shop SMBs with poorly designed websites.

"National Small Business Week recognizes the hard work of small business owners across the country, and their major contributions to our economy as a whole," said Scott Bowen, vice president and general manager of Vistaprint Digital Services. "Our goal with this survey is to provide small businesses with unique data that will help them more effectively reach, attract and retain consumers. Small businesses should understand not only that an online presence is vital to helping them reach new audiences, but that a professional and well-maintained presence can be the difference between a customer walking in the door and choosing to shop elsewhere."

Other interesting findings from VistaPrint include:

• 60% of consumers polled say it's 'important' for SMBs to have a social media presence
• One-third of shoppers find SMBs via the web, one-third find them through word-of-mouth
• 75% say reviews are 'somewhat or very important' prior to visiting a store

Meanwhile, Toluna recently surveyed more than 700 shoppers around the US about small businesses, and among the findings are that nearly half of consumers shop small businesses to support their local economy (44%), and that most (64%) believe SMBs should increase their online presence to attract more shoppers.

Other interesting findings from Toluna include:

• 71% of shoppers believe the government 'should do more' for SMBs
• 44% say they buy from larger chains because of the discounts offered or the unavailability of products at smaller stores
• 33% say they 'are more likely' to shop SMBs on dedicated days - like Small Business Saturday

Tags: ecommerce, ecommerce trends, SMB ecommerce, SMB trends, Toluna, VistaPrint

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