By Rieva Lesonsky
Is your small business using mobile marketing yet? In celebration of National Small Business Month, Web.com today announced the results of its Small Business Mobile Survey. The study found that while 69 percent of small businesses consider mobile marketing crucial to their growth in the next five years, and plan to increase their spending on it, a majority of them still haven’t taken full advantage of mobile marketing.
With 82.2 million Americans using smartphones, according to comScore figures, the benefits of mobile marketing are clear. Out of the 500 small business owners surveyed, 14 percent have a stand-alone mobile website; 84 percent of those entrepreneurs say they have seen an increase in new business activity due to their mobile marketing efforts.
Why are small business owners eager to invest in mobile marketing? Their top motivations were:
- Provide better service to existing customers (38 percent)
- Attract more local customers (36 percent)
- Gain competitive advantage (34 percent)
“With more and more consumers specifically searching for local businesses on their mobile devices, it is imperative that small businesses invest in a mobile presence,” said David Brown, chairman and chief executive officer of Web.com, in announcing the survey results. “Having a mobile presence can be a huge competitive advantage for small businesses trying to attract local customers by instantly introducing a potential customer to their business’ products and services in a mobile-enhanced way.”
But for most small businesses, there is still a long way to go when it comes to adding mobile marketing to the mix. While 60 percent of small businesses surveyed have a website, only 26 percent have a mobile-friendly website (the same layout/content as standard site adjusted to suit a smartphone screen). There’s also a large gap between the rapidly increasing number of mobile searches and small businesses’ mobile search strategy. Over 61 percent of small businesses currently do not have a mobile search strategy, meaning they’re missing out on consumers trying to find them via mobile device.
As a small business owner, you probably know that the biggest hurdle to embracing mobile is lack of time and resources. Some 64 percent of small business owners in the survey said they are their own one-person marketing team. It’s tough to wear multiple hats and find the time to build a mobile presence as well as running other aspects of your business.
Still, it looks like 2012 might be the year when mobile-savvy small businesses step it up. Some 64 percent of small business owners surveyed plan to increase their mobile investments this year.
You can find a full copy of the Web.com Small Business Mobile report and Infographic on in our Small Business Resources secton. Help your friends in the small business community go mobile during National Small Business Month by sharing this report on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn using the hashtag #smbmobile. Presenting on Small Business Mobile please see our handy Powerpoint presentation on the side bar here.
Image by Flickr user Mikigo (Creative Commons)