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Study: 52% of Small and Medium Businesses Say They Weren’t Impacted by COVID-19 But Only 25% Feel in Control

52% of 1,385 small business owners across the U.S. and Canada say they were not impacted by COVID according to a study released today by Cargo and their research partner Phase 5. However, the study, which focuses on trends regarding technology devices among small- and medium-businesses (SMBs), found that only 25% of them feel they are in control of their business.

The study, “Heads Up: How Tech Brands Will Engage with Small Business,” also revealed that many SMBs rate digital transformation as a priority, but 81% of those looking to do so say they need help, and 26% say they need significant help. Additionally, several SMBs are considering online selling, mobilization, and touchless transactions. But there is some hesitation. When asked what is holding back their digital transformation, 35% state learning curve as their reason, 31% say cost, 32% say fraud/security, and 35% say they don’t know where to start. Other findings include:

  • 90% are considering a business “pivot” to some degree.
  • 39% are considering a complete business reinvention.
  • 20% are likely to switch computer vendors in the next twelve months.
  • 28% expect to spend more on technology devices over the next twelve months.
  • 57% of start-ups have increased spending.
  • 30% who say they need help site updating to newer technology as their top priority.
  • 48% do not feel their tech vendors care about their business.

“SMBs are looking to make their businesses even more disruption-proof as we continue to come out of the pandemic,” says Jon Schneider, Marketing Strategist at Cargo. “This study offers insights into how they are evolving and where they are seeking help. Seismic shifts in consumer behaviors, changing workstyles, accelerated digital demands, and purpose-driven mindsets are just a few of the motivators.”

With offices in Greenville, SC and Toronto, Canada, the 55-employee Cargo agency has been delivering advertising and marketing solutions and services to clients since its founding in 2006. The agency specializes in connecting big brands with medium- to small-business customers, and services some of the world’s largest and best-known companies. Cargo was named one of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies by Inc. Magazine in 2020.


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