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Nov 16, 2022, 11:15 ET
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TORONTO, Nov. 16, 2022 /CNW/ — GetApp Canada recently launched its latest research study to understand how small businesses in Canada invested in and deployed digital strategies during the pandemic and what their digital investment plans for 2023 will look like.
In our first series of this study, we found that over a quarter of SMEs surveyed had no digital strategy in place before COVID-19. We also found that the pandemic influenced the elimination of some job profiles, the hiring of others, and the different types of software implemented during this time.
Over one-third of Canadian SMEs cited increases in sales opportunities(37%), website traffic (36%), and brand awareness (35%) as the main benefits of implementing digital strategies. 88% of the respondents consider the marketing channels, such as email and social media marketing, as “very” or “somewhat” important aspects of their digital strategy.
SMEs are regularly making changes to their digital presence, largely to engage with customers in virtual spaces. Daily updates were most commonly carried out on social media channels and review platforms. However, for search engines (40%), e-Commerce platforms (38%) and company websites (36%), updates most typically occur at least once a week.
The budget for digital strategies between 2022 and 2024 is anticipated to stay the same (48%) or increase (43%) for most surveyed SMEs. Of those who will raise investments, 48% believe that since their current strategy is working well, a higher investment would mean higher revenue. One-third of the same group (36%) believe they’ll require more investment mainly to finish setting up their digital strategies. Other cited reasons for investment were to adjust their current approach to digitalization (10%) and to fill open job roles (6%).
Most SME employees surveyed (72%) felt big companies were favoured in the digital age, and 42% consider their company in competition with big companies in the same industry. Of those who see large organizations as their competitors, 66% see this competition as a positive driver for business growth. Other employees disagreed that big enterprises were their competitors, but instead felt that sharing the industry with them was beneficial to their small-to-midsize enterprise.
“Although it can be daunting to enter the same digital arena as large companies, SMEs have reported a wide range of benefits from digital strategies,” explained Tessa Anaya, analyst for this study. “They’ve been able to reach more customers, increase traffic to their websites, and start utilizing data collection for marketing and sales purposes. Whether or not they see big enterprises as unfair competitors, digital strategies have enabled many surveyed SMEs to grow their business in new ways.”
GetApp is the recommendation engine small businesses need to make the right software choice. GetApp enables SMEs to achieve their mission by delivering the tailored, data-driven recommendations and insights needed to make informed software purchasing decisions. For more information, visit www.getapp.ca.
GetApp’s Digital Presence Survey was launched online in August and September of 2022. The survey was completed by 290 employees who fit our criteria. The criteria for selecting participants are as follows:
Marketing Specialist (Canada)
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