24/07/2014 - 15:32

Survey reveals small business confidence and growth

24/07/2014 - 15:32

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More than 850 small businesses across Western Australia have been surveyed to gauge the current state of small businesses, with positive statistics showing that 55 per cent have plans to grow and improve in the future.

Small Business commissioner David Eaton.

More than 850 small businesses across Western Australia have been surveyed to gauge the current state of small businesses, with positive statistics showing that 55 per cent have plans to grow and improve in the future.

Conducted by the Small Business Development Corporation, the annual small business survey monitors key business indicators so services and initiatives can be developed to meet the specific needs of WA small businesses.

Small Business commissioner David Eaton said the survey provided a valuable insight into the sector, which accounts for nearly 97 per cent of all businesses in the state.

“Confidence was highest among businesses involved in manufacturing and information, media and telecommunications, as well as newer businesses and those based in the Perth metropolitan area,” he said. 

“The survey also found small businesses are becoming increasingly confident in their business acumen with 20 per cent fewer stating that they required training compared to 2012.

“A majority of respondents felt their employees were either at the required standard or substantially above that standard.”

The survey also identified that small businesses are becoming more customer-focussed and have used advertising to attract and retain new customers, while those businesses selling goods online have become more confident that their systems and processes can manage online sale logistics.

However the number of businesses not generating any sales through online channels increased by 27 per cent from 2013 to 67.5 per cent.

“Even though 68.3 per cent of respondents have a corporate website and just over a third are using social media, this is not necessarily translating in sales,” Mr Eaton said. 

“These results may indicate that small businesses are not fully realising the potential e-commerce could unlock for them.

“This could be the result of trailing it unsuccessfully for a few years and deciding online sales don’t work for them or not understanding how to do it properly.” 

Mr Eaton said the SBDC has just launched two new workshops, which cover website basics and online marketing to help small businesses better understand these areas.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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