20 Small Business Survey Results You Should Be Aware Of In 2013

I love stats, particularly survey results and research findings. Let’s just say I am a geek when it comes to stats. Not because I like number-crunching activities, but it’s because stats can give us a general idea on the trends; where things are heading and which things we should be aware of throughout the year – including biz opportunities emerging from the trends.

survey results

With regard to small business, there are some mix feelings toward it: Some are pessimistic – and the survey results show; some are optimistic – and, again, the survey results show.

There’s no right or wrong with small business surveys; they are facts and what you can do best is to get updated with some interesting results and use them to strategise your small business accordingly.

To help you sift through the numerous sources of SMB survey results, I have hand-picked some for you to benefit from – enjoy, guys!

From Barry Moltz’s blog:

54 percent small business owners think theirs will grow at least by 10 percent in 2013
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Despite all the issues surrounding small business lately, the majority still spark optimism, expecting their businesses to grow this year.

The biggest SMB issue in 2013: Getting more customers. 45 percent need a strategy to get more customers
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Getting more customers, gaining more traffic, closing more sales… those are the challenges small biz owners need to address on regular basis – and it’s becoming a bigger issue due to the economic woes and uncertainty.

33 percent small biz respondents want to increase their marketing budget and time
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Good news for marketing firms and agencies 🙂 Again, as an indicator of optimism, SMBs are pushing their marketing efforts.

From NFIB:

30 percent more small biz owners believe that economic condition will worsen
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Small business owners need to work harder this year; the economic outlook is rather bleak, and although growing a business during tough times is clearly possible, it’s certainly challenging.

26 percent of respondents think that their small business might not make generate more earnings in 2013
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Who doesn’t want a better earning for their business? Unfortunately, that’s not likely going to happen to some small businesses.

From U.S. Chamber of Commerce – Small Business Nation:

82 percent small businesses think that the US economy is off on the wrong track
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In addition to that, more than half (54 percent) expect the small biz climate to worsen at least until 2015.

88 percent of small businesses are looking for more certainty, opposed to more assistance from the Government
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Small business owners: We don’t need assistance; we want certainty. Uncertainty ruins our plans and we understand that it’s tough to grow my biz under such circumstances.

86 percent believe that regulations, restrictions and taxes will make things harder for small business to operate
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For biz that actually drives the whole nation’s economy, it’s mind-boggling to learn that small biz lacks support.

From Gallup Economy:

53 percent of US SMB owners are having difficulty in finding quality employees
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With today’s unemployment rates, it’s interesting to know that small businesses are having difficulty in finding the right employees. Then perhaps unemployment is not an issue of lack of opportunity but lack of skill?

Cost cutting trends 2013: 42 percent of small biz owners will go for their spouses and/or children for unpaid help
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When you bootstrap or cash-strapped, you can always go to your spouse, children, relatives, friends and interns for unpaid help. Spouse and children remains the go-to target, at 28 percent and 14 percent, respectively.

35 percent of small business owners say they are hiring fewer employees than they actually need
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In an optimistic view, this means the economic outlook improved. In a pessimistic view, the figure is due to the lack of qualified candidates. What’s your view?

From BusinessBolts:

74 percent of SMBs plan to increase their content marketing effort in 2013
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With the increasing popularity of Inbound Marketing, small businesses are doing online marketing that customers and prospects actually love. This is achievable via content.

More than 50 percent US SMBs plan to increase the use of articles, social media content, blog posts and videos for their 2013 content marketing campaign
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Which content? Small businesses will mostly use articles, social media posts, blog posts and videos this year. An opportunity for content service providers to capture buying leads.

From Enterprise Nation:

43 percent of small businesses turn to friends and family for funding
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Surprise, surprise – friends and family remain a great choice for getting you business funded! What about bank loan? Only 11 percent go to banks for funding.

25 percent of SMB respondents will turn to crowdfunding in 2013
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Crowdfunding is on the rise; the simplicity in getting funds to launch a product or a business seems to attract small business owners. Be warned, though… there are potentially patent/copyright issues you need to address.

From eHealthInsurance:

More than two-third US SMBs mistakenly believe that they must provide health insurance for employees in 2014 or pay a fine
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Oh, the agony. It’s challenging enough to run a small business properly. Add to that the misinformation and ambiguity of health insurance policies, and you’ll get strangled small biz growth.

78 percent of US small businesses are not familiar with health insurance exchanges
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I’m sure small business owners want to be sure that they play by the rule, including in health insurances. But what if the rules themselves are not well promoted?

From VerticalResponse:

66 percent small businesses spend more time on social media than they did a year ago
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It’s a mixed feeling; SMBs start to see the potential benefits of social media exposure, but at the same time, they need to spend more time in order to achieve their goals. Is social media ROI attractive? How to know? Is there really a tool to help you measure the ROI of your social media campaign?

55 percent of small businesses have a blog
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…and the bloggers are working hard on quality – 45 percent spend 1-3 hours to create a blog post, while 16 percent spend more than 3 hours to create one.

90 percent of SMBs are on Facebook, 70 percent are on Twitter, and 50 percent are on LinkedIn
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’nuff said… if you want to launch social media campaign for your small business, then the best places to launch it is via Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.


Those are just some stats I gathered from popular small business surveys. There are many other surveys which can reveal interesting small biz trends in 2013. Just Google and you will find it 🙂

Now, how to act on the trends?

For me, the stats show trends; and the best way to respond to trends is by using them as the basis of your decision making.

I also use the trends to explore opportunities; to me, the stats indicate hidden demands. For example, as small businesses are actually having difficulty in hiring quality employees, you could start a business offering hiring services or job boards serving the small business niche. More ideas will come up as you learn about the researches’ and surveys’ key findings.

So, what about you? Are you going to devise tactics and strategies for your biz based on the public surveys and researches? Or do you trust more on the surveys you conduct yourself?