A STUDY by digital marketing agency SponsoredLinX has revealed the surprising statistic that only 22.6 percent of Australian businesses are utilising online marketing channels.
SponsoredLinX developed an algorithm to analyse the online marketing activity of 10,000 businesses across Australia and the results, according to CEO Ben Bradshaw, were “a missed opportunity for thousands of businesses across Australia”.
The SponsoredLinX survey showed wide variations of digital marketing usage across the country. New South Wales led with 26 percent of businesses using platforms such as Facebook advertising and Google AdWords. In South Australia, just 18 percent of businesses were utilising these advertising channels.
“Over the last decade the marketing landscape for small businesses has changed drastically,” Mr Bradshaw said.
“The local newspaper or phonebook is no longer the go-to place for people when they are looking for a product or service.
“Google has become the modern day battlefield for businesses and it’s highly competitive. Most people searching for businesses online won’t look past the first few ads and search results listed on Google.
“Without a clear digital marketing strategy in place, businesses are at risk of missing out on great growth opportunities both here and overseas.”
Mr Bradshaw said complacency was a leading factor behind the slow adoption of online marketing.
“When we speak to businesses who are reluctant to implement an online strategy, one of the most common reasons they cite is that the majority of their clients are acquired through word of mouth,” he said.
“However we have seen this dynamic change in a number of industries. For example, only a few years ago, most home sellers chose a real estate agent based off their profile in the local area and face-to-face meetings at home inspections.
“Today, agent comparison websites have given sellers access to a suite of statistics and sales data which has shaken up the industry.
“Companies who don’t recognise these trends can quickly find themselves playing catch up.”
Google’s AdWord revenue has been on a steady growth trajectory for the last 15 years and totalled $67billion in 2015.
Mr Bradshaw said use of a digital marketing agency could heavily assist small businesses.
“Online marketing can be a very cost effective medium, but budgets can easily be wasted with the wrong strategy,” he said.
“Our research shows that on average, our clients increase their conversion rates by 204 percent after we have been working with them for three months. This figure jumps to 481 percent after a six month period.”