How can ChatGPT leverage small businesses? Statistics and analyses

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To provide the most accurate information possible on how small businesses are using the popular new AI app ChatGPT, we surveyed over 1,000 of these enterprises on this topic. We asked them a variety of questions about their knowledge and use of ChatGPT to get a comprehensive picture of ChatGPT’s impact on small businesses today.

Our study found that while ChatGPT is a relatively new product, it is already making a big impression on small businesses, with 44.36% of respondents saying they have already used the app. What are they using it for? The three most commonly cited uses for ChatGPT among respondents were composing contracts, researching competitors, and translating. Marketing was chosen as the business division most likely to need AI software, while Generation Z, by a large margin, was picked as the generation most likely to prefer using it. Just over 54% of survey participants thought that ChatGPT was at least somewhat useful, with answering questions and generating and improving prose seen as the tasks it does best.

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ChatGPT has been a major news topic recently as the software’s ability to perform complex tasks that could previously only be performed by humans has attracted significant interest. The AI app’s ability to accommodate requests as varied as planning a travel itinerary, writing a poem, summarizing a report, or even writing code has impressed observers and motivated many companies to look into how they can employ ChatGPT in their business.

Ever since its launch by research lab OpenAI in November 2022, consumers and businesses alike have been eager to take advantage of the services ChatGPT offers. The app attracted one million users in just the first five days after its release, and it has been reported to be the fastest-growing app of all time. Two months after its launch, ChatGPT had 100 million active users. By way of comparison, it took Instagram two and a half years to reach that same number.

The arrival of ChatGPT changes the small businesses market

For small businesses, ChatGPT’s emergence changes the game. Many companies that rely on a small number of employees are looking to improve the efficiency of their operations without adding headcount. Utilizing ChatGPT to perform tasks that would typically be done by employees enables small businesses to expand the scope of their activities in an economical fashion. Companies not looking to expand dramatically can benefit from the software by getting more done with their existing staff using it.

What is ChatGPT?

Essentially, ChatGPT is a tool for improving content creation and providing transformation automation. Its ability to quickly answer questions, or prompts, makes it a useful tool for both consumer and business information retrieval and research. It also can be applied to the task of improving existing written content or creating it from scratch, in either case, using a tone or writing style specified by the user. Generative AI is seeing popularity among multiple generations, with the adoption rate in the workplace of such programs varying little among the most recent generations: 29% for Gen Z, 28% for Gen X, and 27% for Millennials.

ChatGPT is an artificial intelligence software application (app) of the type known as generative AI. That means it can generate content in response to a wide variety of prompts. By searching a massive database of web content, it can provide sophisticated answers to questions, or prompts, on a broad array of topics.

Some examples of prompts used with the app might be:

  • How can I build a log cabin?
  • Write a poem in the form of a limerick about the beauty of the moon
  • Summarize the causes of the American Revolution
  • Show me how to code a scheduling app using Python
  • Provide me with a diet plan that will help me lose weight and feel healthier

How powerful is this version?

The current ChatGPT release can answer a wide variety of prompts in a relatively short amount of time by searching through a massive amount of information derived from the web. No human researcher could hope to conduct a search and generate similar output in anywhere near the same amount of time. Thus, ChatGPT represents a powerful advance in AI technology both due to its speed and the massive amount of data it can filter through to answer prompts.

One limitation is that it has only limited knowledge of events after 2021. Additionally, the FAQ from OpenAI, the developer of ChatGPT, says that the program may occasionally generate incorrect answers and even harmful instructions or content that is biased. Future versions of ChatGPT are likely to be even more powerful than the current one.


The report below, prepared by Statista using data sourced from Lexis/Nexis, lists the companies which hold the most active AI and machine learning patent families. It demonstrates that some of the world’s largest tech companies have jumped aboard the AI train. The report features prominent tech companies such as Tencent, IBM, Samsung and Microsoft. Their focus on AI solutions is a  signal that we are now entering what might be called the age of ChatGPT.



*Largest owners in 2021

Source: LexisNexis PatentSight















The companies holding the most ai patents

Number of active AI and machine learning patent families held the company*

The development of AI is as fundamental as the creation of the microprocessor, the personal computer, the Internet, and the mobile phone. It will change the way people work, learn, travel, get health care, and communicate with each other. Entire industries will reorient around it. Businesses will distinguish themselves by how well they use it.

For many businesses, especially small ones, the power of ChatGPT has made it possible to accomplish more with their existing workforce. The app’s ability to quickly perform a number of complex tasks that previously only humans could do makes it possible for businesses to improve their bottom line by getting more done without needing to add as many employees as would previously have been the case.

At the same time, it has changed the game for employees by incentivizing them to upskill and learn to perform tasks that AI programs like ChatGPT can’t emulate. This means that retraining and additional education have become important for employees in the fields most affected by the arrival of ChatGPT.

While ChatGPT can automate many easily performed writing and coding tasks, other tasks may still require humans, according to Rajeeesh Kandaswamy, AI innovation analyst at Gartner. In an interview with zdnet, he stated: "But, there is a lot of creative and unique writing and coding that involves imagination, synthesis, and other complexities that won't be easily solved shortly by these AI tools.”

As ChatGPT changes the game by offering businesses new capabilities, it may even create new jobs focused on assisting AI apps. Kandaswmy states:  "But these capabilities can also lead to new products and services either directly through what these technologies do or in building upon what they do."


In a world where keeping expenses under control is crucial to growth and profitability, ChatGPT can be the difference between turning a profit or a loss for small businesses. By enabling companies to cut costs and get more done with less, ChatGPT makes it possible for a business to survive and even prosper in industries where margins are highly competitive.

ChatGPT is especially valuable for businesses that can use it to offer users the ability to converse with a lifelike chatbot, enabling human customer service specialists to engage in tasks of higher value. This also applies to a variety of other tasks such as scheduling travel, researching competitors, and drawing up contracts.


The graph below indicates that awareness of ChatGPT is rapidly gaining traction among business owners. Out of the 1,010 individuals surveyed, 77,23% or 780 respondents expressed their interest in learning more about ChatGPT. With this number on the rise, it is expected that the app's capacity to address business challenges will further enhance over time.















Are you interested in learning more about ChatGPT?

Answered: 1,010
Skipped: 0

Business owners who first encounter ChatGPT may need some time to understand its full potential. Given the massive publicity the AI app has received, it’s no surprise that more and more business owners are using the program.

A number of business owners who have used the app have been impressed by the productivity gains it enables. Girish Mathrubootham, the CEO of software company Freshworks, said in an interview with Fortune that software development that previously took from eight to 10 weeks, “now can be done in less than a week.” Sundar Pichai, CEO of Alphabet, parent company of Google, said on Alphabet’s latest earnings call that AI “is the most profound technology currently under development by the company.

Another leading tech company executive, CEO Tim Cook of Apple, mentioned during an earnings call that his company has identified AI as an area of “major focus” He added: “it’s incredible in terms of how it can enrich customers’ lives.” Cook further went on to say that the company sees significant potential in the AI space in almost everything they do. “It will affect every product and every service that we have,” Cook said.

What exactly can ChatGPT do to help run a business?

The versatility of ChatGPT has made the AI app popular across a variety of industries for a variety of purposes. In general, ChatGPT can help businesses perform complex automation tasks or language analysis and creation functions.

In terms of specific tasks, our survey found that, the most popular uses of the app were composing contracts at 13.66%, translating at 12.67%, and researching competitors at 12.97%. Other popular uses cited by survey respondents included help with coding and debugging at 9.70% and planning travel itineraries at 9.01%.

  • 7-8%

  • 9-10%

  • 12-13%

Tasks that ChatGPT can help to run a business

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At digital marketing firm Parker Marker, according to a recent report on how businesses are using ChatGPT, CEO Parker Heyn uses ChatGPT as a tool for managing customer questions and tracking customer data at the same time. This automated approach to processing data enabled the company to “save time and maximize efficiency,” Heyn said.

The report also cited feedback from Radhika Gupta, who founded digital agency One Digital Land, who said he employs ChatGPT to help with SEO functions such as keyword research, SEO analytics, and optimizing content for organic search engine marketing, PPC, and email marketing. Additionally, the report featured input from the owner of Moo Soft, Calvin Wallis. The company puts ChatGPT to work to prepare summaries of meeting transcripts in order to make this information easier to access for remote workers who can’t connect to the calls live.

These examples show that ChatGPT can perform many tasks which require gathering and sorting through information better than humans, due both to the speed at which it performs these functions and its ability to accurately adhere to specified parameters. For this reason, businesses that hope to remain competitive in their sector are likely to increasingly find it necessary to adopt ChatGPT if they aren’t using it already.

The pressure to use ChatGPT is also likely to extend to individual employees. As ChatGPT adoption becomes more prevalent, even workers who don’t currently use the AI solution themselves are likely to need to become familiar with how it works and to start using it themselves to avoid getting left behind in the workplace by those who do.


The rapid adoption of ChatGPT at many businesses brings up the question of who is most likely to use it and who can benefit most from the AI software. Respondents to survey question 6 believe that the most likely group to prefer ChatGPT, by a significant margin, is Gen Z. 61.19% chose Gen Z as preferring the software while the Millennial generation, in second place, trailed far behind at 26.83%.













Gen Z (1995 to 2009)


Millenial (1980 to 1994)

Generations of ChatGPT usage

Answered: 1,010
Skipped: 0

The readiness of the young adults and teenagers who make up Gen Z to adopt ChatGPT is to be expected, given that this generation, more than any other, has grown up with the ability to carry a powerful computing device (the smartphone) with them at all times. Thus, taking the next step of using an AI app to help them perform complicated tasks is likely to be less of a challenge for them than it might be for some members of older generations.

With regard to who is likely to need to use ChatGPT the most, the top four specific answers in the survey were marketing, IT, the CEO, and R&D development. While there are definitely many other areas in the AI app that can be of help, these functions tend to be especially suitable for AI-driven applications.

In the IT sector, for instance, Microsoft, which is a major sponsor of OpenAI, the force behind ChatGPT, is planning to incorporate ChatGPT technology into a variety of its most popular software offering including Word and Excel.

In the marketing realm, Coca-Cola recently entered into a partnership with consultants Bain & Company, with the intention to utilize ChatGPT to provide marketing assistance and generate customer experiences personalized to the individual.





















Business departments that need ChatGPT

what do the experts say about chatgpt?

  • Bern Elliot, Vice President at Gartner, stated: “ChatGPT will emerge from its beta phase into an early trial and pilot phase. During that time, we expect adoption to increase, best practices for use to mature, and to see increased adoption into business workflows and applications.”
  • With regard to optimizing the AI app, Elliot further stated: “ChatGPT is an application made up of pre- and post-preparation and screening, and a customized version of GPT-3.5. You submit questions along with any added information, called prompts. While you can’t access the customized GPT-3 in ChatGPT, the way you ask the question — the prompting — can have an important effect on the quality of the result.”
  • “AI will become more and more ubiquitous. This trend cannot be stopped,” according to Dakuo Wang, associate professor at Northeastern University, who advises people to try out the public version of ChatGPT to see what it can and can’t do.
  • Paul Krugman of the New York Times had this to say about the introduction of the AI app: “ChatGPT is only the latest example of technology that seems to be able to carry out tasks that not long ago seemed to require the services not just of human beings but of humans with substantial formal education.”

besides running a business, can chatgpt do anything else?

ChatGPT offers a number of features that aren’t directly linked to running a business. For instance, people have used the app to help write a poem, compose a speech, or even write a book. Consumers can use the AI program for tasks such as comparison shopping, planning their travel itinerary, or looking for a nearby grocery store.

People interested in finding a book to read or a song to listen to could ask ChatGPT for recommendations based on their preferences. The program could also provide a quick summary of a major historical event, or a biography of a major historical figure.

There are many uses for ChatGPT outside of the business realm, with more being discovered all the time as the number of people using ChatGPT continues to rise upwards.

How to optimize ChatGPT for small businesses’ operations

To get the most out of ChatGPT, small businesses need to determine which of their operational processes are most likely to benefit from the app. To do this, it’s important to evaluate your businesses’ processes to see if they can be performed more efficiently by ChatGPT. To do this, the following questions can be asked:

  • Does the task involve sorting through large numbers of records or amounts of data?
  • If so, is this information in the form of data that is easy to sort and analyze?
  • Can the information be easily categorized and summarized?
  • Does the task involve information gathered by the business itself or information found on the internet?

In the case of large databases of information on procedures and processes easily accessed on the web, ChatGPT can provide rapid sorting and categorization of such material. This enables businesses that depend on human labor to perform these tasks to optimize their operations by using ChatGPT for such tasks while shifting human labor to higher value jobs.

For instance, ChatGPT can help optimize business operations based on performing tasks that can be performed using internet sources such as competitor research. It can also serve as a writing assistant to summarize information or suggest how to organize a letter, blog post or report. It can even write certain types of contracts, letters, and reports more rapidly than a human could.

In addition to making the research and writing process more efficient, ChatGPT can help coders translate coding instructions from one language to another or provide suggestions for more efficient coding.

Overall, ChatGPT offers a number of avenues for businesses to consider as they look for ways to use the software to help optimize their operations. 

Does ChatGPT really help these tasks work?

The small businesses we surveyed were more positive than negative about the efficacy of ChatGPT in performing tasks. More than 40% found the AI app to at least be useful to some extent, while just over 14% found that it wasn’t helpful. When asked if ChatGPT would be useful at their company, more than 50% of small businesses thought it would be to some degree.







  • Extremely useful

  • Very useful

  • Somewhat useful

  • Maybe in the future


How useful would chatgpt be to your company

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In terms of how useful respondents felt ChatGPT would be to their business, the majority of survey participants were either positive about the app’s potential or at least open to the idea that it could be helpful in the future. This demonstrates that even though it has only been available for a relatively short time, ChatGPT has already attracted significant interest in the small business community.

One example of ChatGPT’s effectiveness among businesses that are using the app comes from Octopus Energy, a supplier of energy based in the UK, which has integrated the AI app into its customer service platform. Greg Jackson, CEO of the company, has stated that the app currently is able to perform the work of 250 people while getting customer satisfaction ratings that are higher than those of human customer service agents.

Another example features the workplace communication company Slack, which has built an app using ChatGPT to help users manage workflows and increase their productivity when communicating with others on its platform. A report on ChatGPT by the Gartner group found that ChatGPT and similar products have a significant role to play in business operations. The report stated: “ChatGPT — and other foundation models like it — is one of many hyper-automation and AI innovations. It will form a part of architected solutions that automate, augment humans or machines, and autonomously execute business and IT processes.”

Respondents to the survey identified answering questions, generating and improving prose and code development as the three specific tasks ChatGPT performed best. All of these tasks speak to the app’s ability to draw from a massive body of data in the form of text or code and then use the parameters included in a prompt to generate useful content. The fourth and five most commonly cited tasks, summarizing content and clarifying content, also testify to the AP software’s ability to effectively sift through its database to provide users with valuable information.

  • Generating and improving prose

  • Code development

  • Answering questions

  • Summarizing text

  • Clarifying content

  • Translation

  • Designing

  • Researching


Type of tasks that ChatGPT does best

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Suggestion from experts

  • In a blog post, senior solutions architect Muhammad A. said: “ChatGPT is specifically designed for chatbot applications, while GPT-3 is more general-purpose and can be used for a wider range of tasks. This means that ChatGPT may be more effective for generating responses in a conversational context, while GPT-3 may be better suited for tasks such as language translation or content creation.”

  • Gartner AI solutions expert Elliot stated: “There are many ways ChatGPT can produce ‘draft’ text that meets the length and style desired, which can then be reviewed by the user. Specific uses include drafts of marketing descriptions, letters of recommendation, essays, manuals or instructions, training guides, social media or news posts.” Elliot added: “Creating email sales campaign material or suggesting answers to customer agents is reasonable usage,”

  • With regard to ChatGPT’s ability to write code from prose, explain code, convert code from one programming language to a different one, and correct erroneous code Elliot stated: “Suggesting alternatives to software code or identifying coding errors is valid. But don’t let ChatGPT ‘fix’ code, but rather suggest areas to review.”

  • With regard to ChatGPT’s ability to write code from prose, explain code, convert code from one programming language to a different one, and correct erroneous code Elliot stated: “Suggesting alternatives to software code or identifying coding errors is valid. But don’t let ChatGPT ‘fix’ code, but rather suggest areas to review.”

Final Thoughts

The arrival of ChatGPT signals a new stage in the information revolution. While computers have long been relied upon to perform relatively simple tasks, complex tasks that at one time had to be performed by humans can now be satisfactorily accomplished by AI apps. This has created opportunities for businesses to get more done without needing to add employees, while at the same time motivating workers to improve, or upskill, their skill sets.

With OpenAI promising future upgrades to ChatGPT, and competitors looking to improve on the app’s functionality, AI applications appear poised to play a significant role in enhancing business productivity going forward. Exactly how far these programs can go in expanding the scope of AI’s application to business processes is unknown as yet, but the rapid success of ChatGPT thus far likely means that there are still many new areas where AI can help improve the efficiency of a business’s operations.

Methodology and Limitations


Bizreports surveyed more than 1,000 U.S. adults online on SurveyMonkey, 2023. Survey responses were collected from SurveyMonkey.

All survey responses were anonymous, and participants were asked questions about ChatGPT and its impact on their business.


This survey is limited by the sample size (1010 respondents).

Additionally, because the survey was conducted online, technology access and internet access may have impacted participation and the accuracy of the results.

These potential biases should be considered when interpreting the survey results.