In case anyone still had any doubts about the convenience of digitising businesses, the pandemic has cleared them up. Because one of the things that has become clear is that digitalisation is the lifeline of SMEs.
The situation experienced until recently, and from which some are still recovering, has also been a “litmus test” to demonstrate the effectiveness of things. Such as the digital transformation of businesses, without which 78% of them would have had to take very drastic decisions, such as redundancies, temporary closures or even permanent cessations.
These calculations are not free of charge, but are the result of studies such as the Digitisation of SMEs carried out by the eBay platform and the IO Sondea Market Research Institute. This survey took place in the context of the pandemic and was conducted among more than 1,000 small and medium-sized enterprises across the country. The results were as revealing as they were telling.
Reinventing and innovating: the only way forward
Small businesses nationwide have found it necessary to reinvent themselves, with seven out of ten going digital in the course of 2020. Eighty-six percent of SMEs have started experimenting with e-commerce platforms, and 85% have opened profiles on their social networks. At some points, 83% of these businesses even admit to having only had the opportunity to operate online. This is very significant and contrasts with the 11% of businesses that had already relied on digitalisation before March 2020.
But the percentage indicators of the benefits that digitisation has brought to small and medium-sized businesses go into more detail. Forty-three percent of these businesses have also seen how digitalisation has increased the chances of keeping their workforce intact. Forty-two percent were able to continue business as usual, and 38% were able to avoid closure. Another 34% even saw an increase in sales, while 32% started exporting their products.
Experts now highlight the important role that SMEs and the self-employed play in the recovery of the Spanish economy, of which they are a fundamental part. And the digitalisation of businesses continues to be the best way to recover, transform and continue to grow. Because the future is uncertain, and digital transformation, as well as favouring business development, acts as a “network” that protects SMEs in possible downturns. Yes, like on a trapeze.
The end of the crisis is drawing nearer
More and more SMEs are convinced that online sales will be as powerful as physical sales. Seventy-six percent of them believe so, a percentage that has grown over the past year. Most of them also believe that, regardless of the pandemic and its ravages, digitalisation is vital to keep their business going. In other words: once covid is eradicated, SMEs will stay online.
They are also influenced by the fact that they have clearly seen that digital commerce opens the door to selling in more markets. That is why in 2021, eight out of ten small business owners say they are optimistic about the future, especially for 2022, when they expect a full recovery to have taken place. At Somos Sinapsis we are with them, sharing the same opinion, and above all, offering them the necessary tools to do so. Let’s go for the future!