Survey: Only 6 Percent Of SMBs Have Mobile Sites, 45 Percent Don’t Have Any Site At All

HibuLocal directory and advertising provider Hibu published a study on small businesses (SMBs) and mobile marketing in the US and UK. It was based on a survey of 1,800 US and UK SMB respondents conducted in November and December 2013. The sample included a range of industries and business sizes.

The survey found that a whopping 45 percent of US and UK SMBs still didn’t have a website let alone a mobile optimized site. In both cases only 6 percent of respondents with websites said they were mobile optimized.

Hibu SMB sites

Source: Hibu

Among other findings Hibu exposes the distribution of SMB revenues by “channel” or source. The bulk of revenue for US SMBs comes from in-person or invoice based transactions. Only 7.5 percent is from e-commerce. UK businesses see considerably more e-commerce revenue on a percentage basis, but still less than 20 percent of total sales.

Perhaps the most interesting discussion in the report surrounds the gap between SMB perceptions of the value or importance of mobile marketing and their willingness or capacity to act. US SMBs believed they were losing out on annual revenue of roughly $60,000 on average by not having a mobile optimized site. UK businesses said they thought they might be losing £23,793 per year ($39,441).

SMB revenue sources

Source: Hibu

Collectively US SMBs without a mobile optimized site thought they might be losing out on a total of $1 trillion in annual potential revenue.

Despite this perception of a significant missed opportunity, only 12 percent of US SMBs without a mobile-optimized site said they were likely to get one in the next 12-18 months. In the UK the number was almost identical at 13 percent.

This last finding is a perfect metaphor for the entire SMB segment when it comes to digital marketing. They know what they should be doing but daily inertia holds them back. In addition they probably don’t know precisely where to turn to get their digital marketing needs met.

Related Topics: Channel: Mobile Marketing | Statistics: Mobile Marketing | Statistics: Popularity & Usage | Top News

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About The Author: is a Contributing Editor at Search Engine Land. He writes a personal blog Screenwerk, about SoLoMo issues and connecting the dots between online and offline. He also posts at Internet2Go, which is focused on the mobile Internet. Follow him @gsterling.

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  • DrCBunks

    These numbers are somewhat interesting, but would be even more useful with a bit of additional analysis. For example, what percentage of SMBs are on main street or in a mall, relying mostly on volumes of footfall traffic? Does a green grocer or newsagent need a mobile website to drive sales? What percentage of SMBs rely mainly on word of mouth and personal network for business? For example, can most plumbers or painters reasonably benefit from a mobile website? The Hibu study has taken a useful step in collecting data, but have, in my opinion, raised more questions than they have answered.

  • http://www.LeadDiscovery.com/ Jerry Nordstrom

    Define SMB for this study. Go to any swapmeet and you find hundreds of enterprising entrepreneurs who get by with facebook business page, G+ business page, local pages like Yelp, BingLocal, YahooLocal etc. Granted I can make a fairly strong business case for building a website regardless of the size or nature of your business, but these types of businesses along with high personal referral businesses are not willing to invest in online marketing.

    I give it another 5 years before businesses relying solely on word of mouth will lose out to the small business effectively using online loyalty loops. The consumer is changing and adapting to the times, businesses can’t ignore their preferences.

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