12 Important Facts About How SMBs Buy Technology

 
 
By Gina Roos  |  Posted 2015-08-24 Email
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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    1 - 12 Important Facts About How SMBs Buy Technology
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    12 Important Facts About How SMBs Buy Technology

    SMB owners make many of the decisions about technology hardware and business software purchases, but they seek advice from others, too.
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    2 - Decision-Makers
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    Decision-Makers

    96% of SMB owners make technology hardware and purchasing decisions.
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    3 - Seeking Advice
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    Seeking Advice

    About six out of 10 technology decision-makers look for advice from other people and sources before coming to a final decision.
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    4 - New Technology
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    New Technology

    73% of SMB owners (at companies with 100 to 499 employees) completely/mostly view new technology as exciting for their businesses. Percentages drop slightly to 71% at companies with 20 to 99 employees and to 61% at companies with 5 to 19 employees.
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    5 - Buying Cycle
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    Buying Cycle

    The technology buying cycle ranges from six to 13 months, depending on company size and product type (tech hardware or business software).
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    6 - Tech Investment Drivers
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    Tech Investment Drivers

    The primary reason SMBs buy new technology is the need to improve performance or optimize a business process (65%), followed by supporting a growth opportunity for the company (63%), current solution is not working or is broken (58%), new security risks (56%) and changes in their customers' tech use (56%).
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    7 - Industry Leadership
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    Industry Leadership

    SMBs like to do business with companies they respect, according to 83% of SMB owners at companies with 100 to 499 employees, 80% at companies with 20 to 99 employees and 82% at companies with 5 to 19 employees.
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    8 - Top Brands
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    Top Brands

    At least half of SMBs have used top brands, including Google, Microsoft, Adobe and HP. The brands used by slightly less than half are Dell, Yahoo, and Apple.
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    9 - Data Sources
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    Data Sources

    SMB owners use different sources for tech advice based on company size. Businesses with 5 to 99 employees typically turn to colleagues and peers for tech hardware (42%) and business software advice (42%), while businesses with 100 to 499 employees seek advice from in-house experts/department heads for tech hardware (57%) and business software (59%).
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    10 - Selection Process
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    Selection Process

    The majority of SMBs ask the manufacturer or service provider for help to make their technology purchasing decisions. For example, 86% and 76% of respondents, respectively, at businesses with 100 to 499 employees, turn to manufacturers or providers for help in selecting business software and tech hardware.
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    11 - Internet as a Tool
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    Internet as a Tool

    A majority of SMBs use the Internet as a source for researching options: 56%, 50% and 56% completely/mostly agreed, respectively, at companies with 100 to 499 employees, 20 to 99 employees and 5 to 19 employees.
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    12 - Brand Preferences
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    Brand Preferences

    Brand preferences are primarily influenced by company size. Companies with 100-plus employees look for companies that are growing in popularity and easy to do business with while companies with 5 to 19 employees look for leadership.
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    13 - Brand Selection Criteria
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    Brand Selection Criteria

    59% of SMBs rated proven track record and strong customer service/support as an extremely important criteria for deciding which brands/vendors to select. Other criteria included the following: provides a special offer/good pricing (46%), well known and respected (41%) and recommended by peers in the industry (39%).
 

Understanding how small and midsize businesses (SMBs) make their technology buying decisions and the investment drivers behind them provides valuable insight into how resellers and service providers can better meet their needs. One key finding in The Business Journals' annual survey, Technology Decision Making Among SMBs, reveals that the vast majority of SMB owners are making the purchasing decision for both technology hardware and business software. A majority of decision-makers also ask for advice from colleagues/peers and in-house experts. Additionally, they seek out guidance from the manufacturer or service provider as well as the Internet to help select hardware and software technologies for their businesses. Major factors influencing the buying decision include company size, brand perception and customer experience, but buying decisions can take up to a year to make. Here are key takeaways from the survey that give companies in the channel insight into how to better support their SMB customers.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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