A new survey of over 200 Aussie businesses by service business marketplace Service Seeking has found that small business owners are staying positive and expect to increase profits this year despite a modest 2012.
For its recent Service Seeking Business Confidence Survey 2012, Service Seeking interviewed 249 registered business owners from a variety of industries including building and trades, household services, business services and events to gauge their attitude towards 2103 and what it might bring for their business.
Overall, only eight per cent of businesses expected to be worse off in 2013 in terms of business profitability. One of the perceived results of this growth could be a boost in the labour market, with only six per cent of firms looking to reduce staff or terminate contractors, while 35 per cent are expecting to hire more workers.
Price pressure from customers was found to be the leading perceived obstacle for growth. However 63 per cent of business services indicated they would lift their rates, while only 38 per cent of builders foreshadowed price rises in 2013.
A third of businesses are seeing their margins squeezed between value seeking customers demanding more for their money, while the costs of doing business, such bad debts, and inflation in utilities, transport and supplier costs are rising. Only a small proportion of businesses found macroeconomic issues such as supply of skilled labour, a squeeze on credit or licensing and regulation as a major obstacle to their growth this year.
In terms of marketing and business development, Service Seeking found that 61 per cent of respondents intended to use social media as a tool to promote their business. Interestingly, almost 90 per cent of events businesses were looking to social media, while only 53 per cent of building and trades businesses planned to get involved with Facebook and Twitter to raise their brand awareness.
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