While financial challenges following lockdown orders have forced many small and medium-sized-businesses to shut shop, a number of SMBs have seen the benefits of shifting to e-commerce, a Facebook report said on Thursday.
Businesses that reported making over 25 percent of their sales online were more likely to report higher sales than this time last year, said the ‘Global State of Small Business Report.’
They are also less likely to have reduced their number of employees as a result of the pandemic, compared to businesses that made less than 25 percent of their sales online, it added.
For the study, over 25,000 small businesses across more than 50 countries were surveyed in July.
The results showed that while small businesses continue to reopen, many still reported lower sales and sustained reductions in employment due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Facebook also shared findings from a research study it commissioned from Deloitte that examined the impact of COVID-19 on consumers’ purchasing patterns and their use of digital tools to search for and interact with businesses across 13 markets including India.
The results showed that 48 percent of consumers surveyed reported an increase in online spending since the outbreak of COVID-19, and 40 percent of the respondents said they increased their use of social media and online messaging for product and business recommendations.
Nearly two-thirds of the shoppers surveyed who substituted one of their frequented businesses for a new one reported using digital tools to discover these new businesses.
Of those surveyed who started shopping at new businesses since COVID-19, 73 percent said that at least one of those new businesses was a small business.