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Websites ‘crucial to small business growth’

Tuesday 7th March 2017

It’s becoming increasingly important for small, growing businesses to have a website that reflects their brand and gives a clear, engaging representation of the product or service they offer to clients.

According to recent research, having a website makes a bigger contribution to growth for smaller enterprises than most forms of social media.

Web hosting service 123 Reg conducted a survey of more than 2,000 small and micro-businesses and found that those respondents with a website were 51 per cent more likely to grow than those without one.

By comparison, firms that use Facebook are 46 per cent more likely to expand than those that don’t, while those using Twitter are 38 per cent more likely to succeed, according to the research.

One of the most surprising findings from the poll was that Pinterest is more effective at helping smaller businesses achieve growth than any other social media channel. More than half (54 per cent) of companies that used this platform had seen their venture flourish.

The survey also raised some concerns about the capability of many UK start-ups and micro-enterprises to manage their online presence. Nine out of ten of these enterprises don’t have the web skills required to enable growth, with only one in five of the smallest businesses currently visible online.

Nick Leech, digital director at 123 Reg said: “It’s really important to see the impact the gap in digital skills is having on small business growth and to identify the areas that businesses could focus on to improve growth.”

Technical considerations such as access to the internet and digital infrastructure could be high on the list of concerns for business owners looking for shared office space in London and elsewhere.

This is a subject that the government has been urged to focus on to enable growth and innovation in the small business community.

Responding to culture secretary Karen Bradley’s recent launch of the government’s digital strategy, Mike Cherry, national chairman at the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), stressed that smaller enterprises and growing firms will be at the heart of digital transformation and productivity in the UK over the coming years.
He added: “For the UK to be the best place in the world to do business, we need fit-for-purpose digital infrastructure and help for small businesses to develop their businesses online.

“Seventy per cent of small businesses report that their mobile phone is critical to their business, so while delivering 5G is important, too many FSB members tell us that basic mobile coverage is lacking. Action is needed to tackle these ‘not-spots’ and to achieve the government’s promised broadband universal service obligation for all businesses across the country.”

If your business places an emphasis on flexibility, you could benefit from short-term hire of office space that offers all the IT and telecoms infrastructure your employees need to do their jobs.

 

Posted by Emma Beard

Image courtesy of iStock/goir

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