SMBs are taking to mobile solutions like ducks take to water, as revealed in SMB Group’s 2013 SMB Mobile Solutions Study, and as I discussed in 2013 SMB Mobile Attitudes and Challenges. In fact, I’m hard-pressed to think of any other technology area that has enjoyed such a meteoric rise.
In reviewing the results, one of the things that really popped out is that even very small businesses (VSBs, with 1 to 19 employees) are adopting mobile solutions at a fast and furious clip. Consider that overall, 91 percent of all SMBs use mobile devices and services in their businesses, compared to 89 percent of all VSBs. Meanwhile, 67 percent of all SMBs agree or strongly agree that “mobile solutions are now critical for our business,” compared with 50 percent of all VSBs.
One of the areas that we’ve seen the biggest jump in is mobile payments, which are up from 18.5 percent in 2012 to 23 percent in 2013, as shown in Figure 2. More VSBs are outfitting their employees to accept mobile payments with solutions including Intuit GoPayment, Square, PayPal Here and Sage Mobile Payments.
These VSBs see mobile payments as a key means to helping them meet their top business goals–growing revenues, attracting new customers, and improving cash flow. For instance, customers that are short on cash can buy–or buy more–from vendors at farmers’ or flea markets who are armed with mobile payments devices. Plus, they’re so simple that even kids can use them. Case in point–32 Girl Scout Councils are using Sage Mobile Payments as an option for cookie sales. Mobile payments can also assist cash flow by helping to avoid bounced checks. And, with PayPal Here, vendors get paid instantly.
We also found that many VSBs are not only using mobile payments devices while they’re out of the office or store, but also when they’re in it. For instance, I spoke with one woman who runs a yoga studio who processes all of her customer payments through Intuit GoPayment on her iPhone. She doesn’t need to invest in a point-of-sale system, and payments are automatically integrated back to her QuickBooks system, saving time and helping her reduce the errors that come with entering data twice.
Of course, the bottom line is revenues, and mobile payments solutions have proved worthy in that department. Our research shows VSBs that accept mobile payments are a whopping 87 percent more likely to expect their revenues to grow over the next year.
So if you’re among the 52 percent of VSBs with no plans to use mobile payments solutions–think again! Mobile payments solutions can be a great and easy way to help you move your business forward.
Looking for more insider tips for SMBs? Peruse our archive of posts on small business software solutions, best practices and more by visiting the small business solutions section of the Business-Software.com blog.