July 20, 2011

Small businesses miss out online

by Jan Harris

Businesses with fewer than 50 employees are missing a trick when it comes to sales, according to new research from software company Serif.

The study found that 54 per cent of the 400 sole traders and small businesses polled did not have a website, and half of those without websites failed to see the need for one.

However the Internet-savvy businesses with their own sites generated 41 per cent of their new business online.

Cost was one of the reasons given for not having a website, and lack of confidence in creating their own website.

Serif of course, says that the availability of web designer software such as its own, allows anyone with computer skills to build a professional looking site.

Gary Bates, managing director at Serif, said: “With over 80% of people in the UK accessing the internet, most of them every day, it’s increasingly vital that small businesses have a website of their own to reach that informed and active audience”.

A related piece of research found that small businesses prefer to direct customers to their company website rather than their social media pages.

Melbourne IT polled 2,264 SMEs who have a company website, and found that the percentage also using social networks such as Facebook increased from 34% to 50% in 2011.

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