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Price is the key factor when selling software to small business

  • 17 October, 2003 16:25

<p>Sydney – October 17, 2003 – Silverspan conducted 230 telephone interviews in July 2003 over a 2 week period. The goal of the survey was to take a snapshot of the attitudes of people towards the IT industry and their usage of particular technologies. Silverspan is a specialist marketing agency, servicing the IT industry.</p>
<p>All respondents to the survey were surveyed at work, with companies involved in the IT and telecommunications industry being deliberately excluded.</p>
<p>The report can be downloaded free of charge from www.silverspan.com</p>
<p>Many technology companies offer small business solutions. Those solutions are usually designed to cater to companies with fewer than 100 employees. The results of this research report clearly show that businesses with fewer than 20 employees have a completely different set of priorities to the rest of the market.</p>
<p>Sebastian Rice, Managing Director of Silverspan commented on the survey results,
“Price is clearly the number one issue when buying software for businesses with fewer than 20 employees. They are clearly a unique market segment. Technology vendors need to produce specialised offers if they want to be relevant to this market.”</p>
<p>The survey results also show that in the last year, the number of people purchasing products online has grown rapidly. However, it is clear that large sections of the community do not regularly use the technology.</p>
<p>Sebastian commented further, “The government has spent years singing the praises of the Internet and broadband revolution, yet our research shows that government and education sector employees were the least likely to have purchased anything online in the week prior to our survey. Furthermore, banking &amp; finance and government sector employees ranked as the least likely to have a broadband internet connection at home.”</p>
<p>Summary of results:</p>
<p>Q1 Have you worked at home in the last week?</p>
<p>36% of all respondents said YES to this question.
This was a significant decline from our September 2002 survey, when 52% responded YES to the same question.
HR managers were the least likely (18%) to have worked from home.</p>
<p>Q2 Is video conferencing a good substitute for a face to face meeting?</p>
<p>56% of those interviewed said YES.
The people most skeptical about video conferencing were CEOs and IT decision makers.</p>
<p>Q3 Have you used video conferencing in the last month?</p>
<p>21% of those interviewed said YES.
Respondents of companies with 2000+ employees were at least 3 times more likely to have recently taken part in a video conference compared to respondents of companies with fewer than 250 staff.</p>
<p>Q4 Have you purchased anything online in the last week?</p>
<p>26% of those interviewed said YES.
Respondents working within the education and government sectors where least likely to have purchased anything online.</p>
<p>Q5 Do you have a broadband internet service at home?</p>
<p>24% of those interviewed said YES.
Human resource decision makers were the group most likely to have broadband installed at home with 36% indicating YES.
Respondents that worked for companies within the banking and finance sector were the least likely to have a broadband service at home.</p>
<p>Q6 How long is it since your work computer was last replaced/upgraded?</p>
<p>54% of respondents had been given a computer upgrade in the last 12 months.
72% of Sales and Marketing staff had received an upgrade in the last 12 months, while CEOs where the least likely to have received an upgrade.</p>
<p>Q7 Does your office have a wireless network/LAN ?</p>
<p>31% of respondents answered YES.
Business &amp; Professional Services and Banking &amp; Finance were the industry sectors least likely to have a wireless LAN.</p>
<p>Q8 Do you own or plan to buy a PDA in the next 3 months?</p>
<p>21% of respondents indicated they owned a PDA, with another 6% indicating that they planned to buy.
IT decision makers were more than twice as likely as any other job role to own a PDA. The only respondents indicating that they planned to purchase a PDA worked in IT department jobs.</p>
<p>Q9 Approximately how many emails do you receive at work each day?</p>
<p>61% of respondents receive fewer than 50 emails per day, with 17% receiving fewer than 20.
Company size plays a role in the volume of emails received, with respondents working at companies with 2000+ employees clearly receiving the largest quantities of email.
Respondents from the Building &amp; Construction and Education sectors received on average the lowest volume of emails.</p>
<p>Q10 What do you think is the single most important factor when buying software for work?</p>
<p>Respondents were given a choice from the following list: brand/company, ease of ues, integration/interoperability, price, support, recommendation, security features or other.</p>
<p>Factor Respondents
Integration/Interoperability 35%
Ease of Use 22%
Other 14%
Support 10%
Price 8%
Security features 5%
Brand/company 3%
Recommendation 3%</p>
<p>The results were dramatically different for companies with fewer than 20 employees.
This group clearly identified price as being the most important factor (40%), with none of the respondents in this demographic nominating brand, security, recommendation, or support.</p>
<p>Q11 Which IT company do you admire the most?</p>
<p>Microsoft was the clear favourite, being selected by 17% of respondents.</p>
<p>Company Respondents
None 40%
Microsoft 17%
Other 13%
IBM 9%
Don’t Know 8%
HP 4%
Novell 3%
Dell 3%
Apple 2%
Sun Microsystems 1%
Cisco 1%</p>
<p>Compared to previous Silverspan surveys, the number of companies in the Other category has grown dramatically. The most widely known companies are being chosen less often, while local or niche suppliers are being nominated with increasing frequency.</p>
<p>About Silverspan
Silverspan is a specialist marketing agency, servicing the IT industry. Based in Sydney, Silverspan delivers services in Australia and New Zealand. Silverspan has extensive technical, marketing and sales expertise in the areas of Networking technologies, e-Business solutions, IT security products, Enterprise software, Telecommunications services, Computer equipment and Professional services. For more information visit Silverspan on the internet http://www.silverspan.com</p>
<p>Media Contact
Sebastian Rice
02 9959 1991 seb@silverspan.com</p>

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