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UK Consumers Search for SMBs

Search is the top digital discovery tool for SMB customers

November 17, 2015

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) always have to box clever when it comes to marketing budgets—or budgets full stop, for that matter. Without the limitless resources of their enterprise-sized competitors, they need to ensure that they're getting the biggest bang for their buck. Recent research, conducted by Circle Research for Latitude and Bing, indicated that digital marketing should be top of mind in this regard.

Ways in Which Their Customers Discover Them According to UK SMBs, Sep 2015 (% of respondents)

The study, with research conducted in September 2015, found that, word-of-mouth aside, digital methods of discovery were far more common among UK consumers looking for SMBs than select other traditional methods like flyers and magazine ads. Among those digital methods, search was far and away the most popular way for UK consumers to discover such companies, cited by 62% of respondents.

Social media was a little further back, cited by 37%, but still well ahead of the three physical marketing methods detailed in the research—magazines, flyers and telemarketing. But while social represents one of the sexier digital marketing methods, search remains top dog; something that SMBs may want to fully digest.

Expected Change in 2015 Digital Marketing Spending According to UK Marketing Consultants*, by Channel (% of respondents)

June 2015 polling by Our Social Times and Constant Contact asked UK marketing consultants—83% of whom worked for agencies or consultancies with fewer than five staff members—about expected changes in 2015 digital marketing spend. And to continue the metaphor, it seems that sex sells. The biggest proportion—46%—said they would increase content marketing budget, while a further 41% said social media marketing would see an increase in spend. Search engine optimization (SEO), while still deemed important, was cited by 40% of respondents who expected to see an increase here.

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