Survey Says Small Businesses Lagging on Digital Marketing


New survey by Clutch highlights lack of adoption of digital and search engine marketing tactics.

Nearly half of small businesses will allocate just 20 percent or less of their marketing budget to digital strategies in 2015, according to a new survey conducted by research firm Clutch. While some businesses plan to increase their digital marketing spend this year, there is still a significant amount of lag in adopting many proven digital marketing tactics.

Furthermore, certain digital strategies are met with greater resistance than others, for example, in the area of search engine marketing. Forty-two percent of small businesses stated they are unlikely to use online advertising such as Google AdWords in the future, compared to 25 percent unlikely to actively work on search engine optimization (SEO).

To collect the data, Clutch analysts gathered over 350 survey responses from small business owners and managers distributed across the US. The report includes commentary from representatives of digital marketing agencies in addition to the survey data.

"We find a lot of our small to mid-sized clients need a lot of education as to why we do what we do, what they should expect from it, and how it works," stated Joseph Cahill, chief strategy officer at internet marketing firm Straight North. "It is the obligation of agencies like us to educate whenever possible, and to promote transparency in reporting to demonstrate value. This survey tells me there's still a lot of work to be done in that area."

The report is the first of four segments Clutch will publish in the coming weeks examining the results of the small business survey. The first segment is primarily focused on search engine marketing, with future reports to examine small business web design, social media marketing, and mobile application development.

The full analysis with additional survey findings can be found at

About Clutch

Clutch is a Washington, DC-based research firm that identifies top services and software firms that deliver results for their clients. The Clutch methodology is an innovative research process melding the best of traditional B2B research and newer consumer review services. Clutch utilizes a proprietary framework, the Leaders Matrix, which maps firms focus areas and their ability to deliver on client expectations. To date, Clutch has researched and reviewed 700+ companies spanning 50+ markets.