Small business is leaving $50 billion on the table

 

If you work in or around small business, I’m sure that you have heard it mentioned that every business should have a website and be on social media. Correct?

The question many people ask is why?

It takes hard work…

Running a small business is hard.

It takes blood, sweat, tears plus a lot of hard work on top of that! Small business owners often find themselves pinned down in the daily operations looking after everything from administration, accounts, staff, stock control, problem solving, the list goes on.

Often times, business owners can fall into the habit of working ‘in’ the business more than ‘on’ it. At the end of the day, they are the ones responsible for the success of the business and this can drag owners further and further into the everyday operations.

So that being said, we shouldn’t be surprised when small business owners don’t want to talk about incorporating some digital technology. Most just don’t have the time, knowledge or desire to be thinking about SEO, PPC, analytics and how to optimise their next online advertising campaign.

Small business is leaving money on the table…

It is becoming clear that the more time goes on, the more important it is for SME’s to have a digital presence.

In a report by PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers Australia), “small businesses can unlock an additional $49.2 billion of private sector output over the next ten years by making better use of these technologies”.

It also states that 53% of this benefit could be realised in rural and regional Australia.

Digital innovation will shape our future economy.

Millennial’s are taking over today’s market and we (yes I am Gen Y) love all things digital. For businesses to gain our attention, they need to be where we are. Which of course, is in the digital space and on our mobile devices!

Making digital a priority…

Having always lived in regional Australia, I am very familiar with small business being the backbone of rural communities. I have seen the up’s and down’s, high’s and low’s of small business ownership and had first hand experience of this in my families business.

All too often, I see empty shops and retail spaces in regional CBDs, marketplaces and shopping precincts.

What if those businesses had prioritised digital within their business to promote, market and get more foot traffic through the door?

Could it have been enough for them to have a social media presence to entice potential customers to stop and enter their shop?

I have heard from many SME owners that digital technology and marketing are both time consuming and expensive.

They don’t have to be!

What if the success of a business simply rests on their ability to gain the attention? Potential customers who are walking past the shop front, head down, engaged with their mobile device. Millennials and Baby Boomers alike, because lets face it, nearly everyone’s mother now has a Facebook or Instagram account.

Providing a digital solution…

The beauty of the digital world is that it is designed to solve the problems of humanity.

Digital is designed to help us live more functional, connected and productive lives. It allows us to communicate with anyone in the world at any given time. Relationships can be built where they previously wouldn’t have existed. It is where our attention is and what our future is being built upon.

The report by PwC states that, Australian businesses must embrace digital or be disrupted.

There needs to be a focus on helping small business owners fight their way through the ‘noise’. They need simple but effective digital strategies that gain consumer attention and drive sales. 

For many retail businesses, I believe a more innovative social media strategy could make a big difference.

Its now vital for small business to embrace digital and leverage it to their advantage!

 

What are your thoughts? It would be great if you leave a comment below!

 

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Anthony Murphy

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