SMEs ignoring GBP52.6bn in mobile sales revenue

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Retailers falling behind through lack of knowledge and fear over cost.

Small to medium businesses will miss out on £52.6billion in revenues over the following 12 months by failing to take advantage of mobile technologies.

A national survey of 500 SMEs in the UK conducted by OnePoll on behalf of mobile app development company AppsBuilder, found that over 3.2million businesses are ignoring mobile technology business avenues and that 4.9million, or 65.8% of the nation’s small to medium enterprises offer no mobile solutions.

Supporting the shortfall in mobile development among business, research from Gartner yesterday showed that tablet sales would outstrip those of PCs next year.

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The findings reveal that businesses are not responding quickly enough to the changing habits of their customers and the unprecedented growth of internet access via smartphones and tablets.

Mobile phone internet access alone has doubled in the last three years according to the Office for National Statistics and according to the 2013 Internet Retailer Global Mobile 500, 5% of all retail sales are now made via mobile devices.

Of the 500 SMEs surveyed only 18.4% will be adopting a mobile strategy in the next 12 months, which potentially leaves 47.4% of the UK’s SMEs without a strategy or plans to adopt one. The survey found that the key barrier preventing businesses from going mobile was a lack of technical knowledge alongside the associated costs.

Of those SMEs who have implemented a mobile strategy, 44% spent up to £10,000, 55% spent between £10,000 and £100,000 and a mere one percent spent over £100,000, showing how the cost of adopting mobile has dropped significantly since 2012 when anticipated costs were well over the £100,000 mark.

Businesses in East Anglia and Northern Ireland were the most likely to have adopted a mobile presence while those in the North East and West Midlands were the least likely.

Daniele Pelleri, co-founder and chief executive officer of AppsBuilder, said: “With so many people now using mobile devices to access the internet it’s a huge surprise that more businesses are not rising to the challenge and adapting their offerings for the sophisticated mobile user. Mobile is changing our business landscape in a similar way to how the internet changed our economy; those who embrace mobile fastest will quickly reap the rewards from this lucrative sales and communication channel”.

In response AppsBuilder has launched the #GetMobileNow campaign to address the issue and provide businesses with the tools and knowledge necessary to reach an increasingly sophisticated customer base.

The campaign includes a week-long SuperSummit virtual event for July 21-25, as well as resources and dedicated live chat with mobile experts, all free to SMEs. For details visit getmobilenow.co.uk

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