SMB Insights 2023 – How Is Digital Affecting End Results?

SMB Insights 2023 – How Is Digital Affecting End Results?

It’s no secret that using digital technologies can benefit SMBs. They can target new customers and gain entry to a new market at a relatively affordable cost using digital tools. An analysis by Deloitte found that, businesses that are digitally advanced have more benefits than the ones who have low levels of digital engagement. 

Digital Channels, SMBs & Customers 

More than half of small businesses who responded to the Clutch Survey, market through their website (62%) and social media (61%). 

There’ve been a lot of discussions after State of Local SEO Industry Report was released which found that 64% of 1,411 surveyed local business marketers said that Google is becoming the new “homepage” for local. And people started questioning “do local businesses still need websites?” There’s plenty of eveidence to sugest that when it comes to small business marketing, SMB websites play a key role. A survey by BrightLocal found that consumers trust the content on local businesses’ websites than the information posted on Google My Business or online directories. 

A survey by Uberall found that nearly half of business listings have incorrect information. Here’re some of the mistakes related to important business information: 

  • Opening Hours: 978,305 errors (almost half of all listings)
  • Website: 710,113 errors (almost one third of all listings)
  • Location Name: 510,010 errors (almost one quarter of all listings)
  • Street: 421,048 errors (almost one fifth of all listings)

Also, 48% of customers will stop considering a business if it doesn’t have a website, as per  2018 Telstra Small Business Intelligence Report .

Note for SMB Owners

Whatever be the aim of your SMB website ( be it generating sales, raising awareness on company’s values, or telling your story) – make sure that it’s aligned with the overall marketing strategy of the company. For instance, when PURE CF, a design and manufacturing company, changed its name from Cottage Furniture – it created a new website to rebrand and raise awareness.

We helped eMAR, a startup that provides electronic medication administration record (EMAR) system for care homes, get leads on a shoestring budget. After doing a detailed market analysis, we focused on only a few keywords on SEO & Google Ads. We started the ad campaigns after creating a website that works for their industry (again by retouching their existing website to keep the budget low). To know the full details on how we helped eMAR generate leads at a low cost, email at 

Social Media

Facebook is still the most-used channel for SMBs. There are more than 90 million SMBs with an active presence on Facebook. And why not? It’s still the biggest platform for consumers – with 2.4 billion monthly active users , it’s just the right place for SMBs to reach out to users from different demographics.

Also, Facebook has rolled out several features to help SMBs get real results. For instance, with Automated Ads businesses can avail these benefits: 

  • Multiple versions of your ad: You can create up to six different versions of your ad automatically. We’ll suggest call-to-action buttons, text and other creative details based on information from your Page, and once your ad is active, we’ll automatically show the best-performing version.
  • Tailored audience suggestions: We’ll provide audience options or recommendations based on information from your Page.
  • Recommended budget that generates results: We’ll recommend a budget most likely to get you results based on your goal. You can also provide your own budget and we’ll share the estimated results that you can expect.
  • Timely notifications about your ads: You’ll receive notifications to help you understand how your ads are performing and how you can improve them. These can include suggested changes like refreshing an image or notifications when your ad starts generating results like a lead or sale.

Note for SMB Owners

Let’s see an example of how a video ad campaign by UrbanStems on Facebook & Instagram helped the flower company get 4X return on ad spend. For Valentine’s Day, UrbanStems collaborated with Vogue and created animated Gifs that ran for less than 7 seconds. These ads featured a box labeled as “Vogue x UrbanStems” being unwrapped to showcase an amazing flower arrangement. The ads were displayed to readers of Vogue and other similar magazine brands on Facebook and Instagram till Valentine’s Day and for the rest of the 3-month campaign, the company ran generic video ads, showing them to a Custom Audience of people who visited their website and also to a lookalike audience based on the Custom Audience.

UrbanStem’s video ad campaign, which ran from January–March 2018, successfully accelerated the online floral company’s expansion across the US into new markets, showing:

4X return on ad spend
30% higher return on ad spend (during the same period that ad spend rose by 4.3X)

Instagram is another channel that most SMBs (particularly B2C ones) are attracted to. SpearmintLOVE, an online retailer of infant clothing and accessories, got 33.8X return on ad spend directly from Instagram. Here’s what Shari Lott, Founder & CEO of the company has to say 

When it came time to scale the business, Instagram and Facebook became natural places to test our first ads. As a small business, we had less room for error, because every dollar is getting put back into our business.

LinkedIn is a popular channel for B2B SMBs. Business owners can download this free LinkedIn Pages Action Plan for Small Businesses to get an insight into the tactics needed to effectively grow their LinkedIn presence. Here’s an example of how Argyle Social, makers of social media marketing dashboard, upped their lead generation campaign by focusing on paid ads on LinkedIn. They initially ran offers for a demo or a free trial to users to try their software platform. Though the campaign got them good results, but the company saw a huge increase in leads when they changed the offer to download a white paper about social media ROI ( Source: The B2B Social Media Book). The results are in line with the recent 2019 Edelman-LinkedIn B2B Thought Leadership Impact Study which found that 


64% of business owners do all the marketing themselves (which usually means poor execution as they are short on time & have limited knowledge on digital), according to BrandMuscle’s “State of Local Marketing” report for 2018 Only 3% of the survey respondents said they were using an outside agency or vendor. And only 7% had a dedicated marketing person on staff. The same report found that : 

A survey by Local Search Association (LSA) found out the challenges SMBs face when selecting a digital marketing provider which include – 

  • finding a reasonably priced service provider (56 percent)
  • finding a provider that provides value or ROI (44 percent)
  • finding a provider that can be trusted (38 percent)
  • finding providers that understand their needs (35 percent)

Another challenge is finding and retaining good talent. 53% of small business owners with 49 or fewer employees said that staffing is a major concern for them, as per the 16th Annual SMB Insights. LinkedIn conducted a survey of 1,000 owners of businesses with 200 or fewer employees to understand the challenges when it comes to hiring. 

The report also mentions solutions to each of the challenges mentioned by the businesses. You can read this full-of-insights report here 

SMB Marketing : Need Help?

We have helped SMBs from India as well as different countries to help them meet their business goals. With offerings including: 

  • Digital audits at all level
  • Training & consulting
  • 360 degree project exceution 
  • Helping build your team  – we can help your business achieve the right digital success

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