According to the results of a study conducted in April this year, around 59% of small businesses do not make use of search marketing.
Microsoft adCenter had commissioned Kelton Research to carry out the survey across 400 small businesses, which had fewer than 250 employees.
The study was conducted online, with the help of 38 questions selected for the purpose of judging the mindset and behaviour of such business owners.
Last year a similar study was conducted in U.K. and revealed similar results.
Surprisingly, of the 59% who said they did not use search marketing 90% said that they had never even attempted to do so, though 86% felt that they were missing an opportunity to expand their businesses.
In fact, 73% of these businesspersons went to the extent of saying that they would rather do their own taxes than start a search marketing campaign. This just goes to show how scared people are to try marketing their businesses through paid search, which could actually be beneficial to them.
72% of the people who do use search marketing say that the number of sales inquiries they receive have gone up and 68% report that they have found that paid search marketing has been effective.
Among the major factors which respondents to the survey reported, were fears regarding costs, time involved and complex procedures involved in the process of search marketing.
In order to allay these fears, Microsoft has offered a free search marketing assistance campaign.
Director of adCenter at Microsoft Advertising, Brian Boland says, “Given today’s current economic conditions, small business owners need more effective ways to optimize their marketing dollars. By investing in paid search marketing, small businesses can track online sales, and determine the return on investment for their campaigns, while at the same time boosting traffic and visibility for their websites.”
The Quick Launch program offered by Microsoft adCenter offers free guidance to advertisers with a minimum monthly budget as low as $500. The advertisers will also be given advice on managing their campaigns through classroom-style training programs, and help to build Keywords etc.