Limited Optimism Drives SMB Pragmatism in 2014

Thursday, May 1, 2014
Posted by John Beagle

With National Small Business Week approaching May 12-16, Neopost USA gained insights on SMB perspectives for the remainder of the year via a survey of 19,000 small business customers. The results revealed a cautious and guarded approach to business, with limited optimism for gains later in the year. 

Neopost USA has a special understanding of the key business communication management and shipping issues that worry small- to medium-sized businesses (SMB). That active relationship stems from the unique depth of knowledge Neopost USA actively cultivates by listening to its SMB customers. Results from an April survey of 19,000 Neopost USA SMB customers indicate that SMBs favor efficiency, control and measured growth in their operations now more than ever. Their prognosis about the second-half of 2014 is not optimistic. The main component of their unsettledness is a bleak outlook about growth for the remainder of the year.

Less than 20 percent of SMBs respondents believe that the next three months will be a good time for them to expand their operations, and 55 percent believe economic conditions will remain the same during the next six months. These data points indicate that the small business community will remain cautious and guarded as the country nears the mid-point of the calendar year.

“Even though small businesses are generally pessimistic, they are also pragmatic,” says Alain Fairise, Executive Vice President, Small Office Solutions Division. “Small businesses are looking at every opportunity to create efficiency, leverage technology and optimize their existing resources.”

The Neopost USA survey showed that 40 percent of small businesses believe their best chance at growth lies in revamping their sales force compensation plans and eliminating ineffective distribution channels. Other small business growth strategies cited by respondents include geographic expansion and an increased focus on customer lead generation.

The Neopost USA small business survey results also revealed the three most popular marketing strategies small businesses plan for 2014: Targeting new markets, targeting diverse audiences and expanding online marketing. 

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