And the Small Business Surveys Say …
It’s National Small Business Week. And with that comes a range of small business surveys being released.
So, let’s cut through the cacophony and get to some details and suggestions that you might be able to use for your small biz.
For most Americans, small business is personal. More than 56 percent having a parent, family member or close friend involved in either owning or having owned a small biz, according to a Morning Consult survey done for University of Phoenix School of Business.
Small business owners see education as a priority, with 52 percent in a Constant Contact survey saying they allocate up to 10 percent of their time monthly to learn something new. The top three most recent topics included social media, search engine optimization (SEO) and Facebook, according to the survey.
A Fifth Third Bank survey showed that almost four out of five small business owners say they have not taken advantage of community and local resources to help them develop and grow.
When it comes to the primary resources for advice and help, they consider other small business owners (28 percent), family (25 percent), friends (18 percent), the Internet (11 percent) and their attorney (6 percent) before considering their banker (5.5 percent), community assistance provider, local chamber of commerce and the Small Business Administration or local small business development center. The survey also showed 38 percent said they need help growing revenues and increasing profits.
The reality is that small business owners are optimistic (64 percent) and have plans for growth (75 percent), according to the 2016 American Express OPEN Small Business Monitor. In addition, hiring plans have changed with 39 percent expecting to hire staff over the next six months. Their biggest struggles for growth are finding the right employees (19 percent), according to the study.
While optimism abounds, small business owners are less certain about the U.S. economy than in 2015, according to the 2016 U.S. Bank Small Business Annual Survey.
Meanwhile, having a robust website and social media presence remain keys for small business owners to stay essential. Consumers expect it of them, seeing those as more important than online and on-air advertising, loyalty programs, or even a Facebook page, according to Time Warner Cable Business Class’ Small Business Technology Impact Study.