With SMEs being the backbone of the British economy, research by Wix, the cloud-based website development platform, revealed that small businesses in the UK, could be missing out on £35,000 of extra revenue each month, due to a lack of efficiency online.
The study by Wix, which looked at the productivity, efficiency and general sentiment of UK SMEs in 2019, revealed that 40% of British businesses still have no online presence and almost 1 in 3 (30%) that do have a website, are still not completely digital.
Of those surveyed, 87% of the SMEs that still do not have a website, claimed that they don’t see the benefit of digitalising all of their business. However contrary, 88% of SMEs that are completely digital (using digital tools like invoicing and payments, customer service, chat, and automations etc) revealed their revenue has increased by an average of £35,000 a month, and £23,000 for those with 1 to 49 staff members. This was predominantly down to saving time and resource.
Tasks that SMEs are most likely to keep traditional (not digital) were revealed as 59% customer service; 56% administration; 48% bookkeeping; 44% payments and invoices; and 41% marketing.
Looking at cost, SMEs revealed they pay on average £28 an hour for administration skills; £29 an hour for payments and invoicing; £29 an hour on bookkeeping and £27 for social media management.
Matt Rosenberg, Director at Wix comments,
“The results of the survey are not a surprising. At Wix we build features and functionality to directly address small business pain points. For an SME owner, moving your business online for marketing and management is good for exposure, productivity and efficiency, and the results will be evident on the business’ bottom line. SMEs in the UK would absolutely benefit to strive for peak efficiency and bringing their business operations fully online would do just that. The great news is that it’s easier than ever, even for small businesses, entrepreneurs and solopreneurs, to migrate their businesses to function fully online in a cost-effective manner.”
SMEs biggest fears with Brexit on the horizon
When asked the biggest issues SMEs were facing, the fear of Brexit led the way, with 38% saying the state of the economy was the biggest issue. Other obstacles included 35% saying cashflow; 25% time management and efficiency; and 18% chose keeping up with technology and innovations in the market a problem.
The biggest obstacles facing British SMEs
- The state of the economy
- Cash flow
- Time management / efficiency
- Competing in the sector
- Regulation and security
82% of decision makers advised Brexit had already affected their business, with 47% saying clients and customers are reluctant to invest into the UK; 41% of suppliers have increased costs; and 36% said it has nearly cost their business to shut down!
To try and improve efficiency and reduce costs in the past year, 27% said they were reviewing and making cutbacks with suppliers; 25% have decreased overheads; and 39% have been encouraging staff to work at home and even closed the office to reduce overheads.