CHANTILLY, Va., Nov. 2, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- In the latest wave of the Local Commerce Monitor (LCM: Core - Wave 16, Q3 2012), BIA/Kelsey's ongoing tracking survey of small and medium-sized businesses conducted with research partner Ipsos, SMBs reported spending, on average, $1,190 during the previous 12 months on websites and other Web properties, such as social networks and mobile optimized sites, up from $876 in Wave 15 (conducted in Q4 2011).
"While total annual spending on advertising and promotion remained flat at around $3,000 for the previous 12 months, SMBs are allocating more of their marketing dollars to digital presence assets," said Steve Marshall, director of research, BIA/Kelsey. "From Web presence and mobile websites to social media, small businesses are building deeper and broader engagement with customers across a range of digital presence platforms."
Social media, propelled by Facebook, appears to be rapidly evolving into a core medium for SMB advertising and promotion. Among LCM: Core - Wave 16 respondents, 63 percent report they now use social media.
In addition, mobile platforms, and the advertising/promotion formats that ride on them, have gained significant traction since LCM: Core - Wave 15, in which only 8.7 percent of respondents reported having a mobile website. In Wave 16, 14.7 percent report having a mobile website, with another 22 percent saying they intend to add one within the next 12 months.
More than half (55.3 percent) of the SMBs surveyed report they use (34 percent) or plan to use (21.3 percent) customer loyalty programs, defined as "offering discounts or special promotions to frequent customers."
Local Commerce Monitor Wave 16 was conducted in August 2012 via an online survey of 600 SMBs, consisting of two samples of 300 – LCM: Core (no minimum annual advertising and promotion spend) and LCM: Plus Spenders (minimum annual spend of $25,000). The findings highlighted in this press release are from the LCM: Core sample.
Upcoming Presentations of LCM Data
In a free webinar on Nov. 8, BIA/Kelsey analysts will preview the LCM data that will be presented at the firm's Interactive Local Media West conference, taking place Dec. 4-6, in Los Angeles. This year's conference theme is "Leading in Local," and will feature BIA/Kelsey's latest local research and analysis, including spotlights on sales force transformation, mobile, deals, big data and local loyalty platforms. Conference details and registration are available at http://www.biakelsey.com/ilmwest2012. Webinar information and free registration are available at http://bit.ly/TkMBje.
About Local Commerce Monitor
Local Commerce Monitor (LCM) is BIA/Kelsey's ongoing tracking survey of small and medium-sized businesses conducted online with research partner Ipsos. The survey measures where SMBs are spending their advertising and promotional budgets and how their media usage and spending habits are evolving. For this study, SMB is defined as a business having from 1 to 99 employees. Local Commerce Monitor draws its sample of business respondents from a mix of nationally scoped MSAs, which include first- and second-tier markets. Local Commerce Monitor Wave 16 was conducted in August 2012 via an online survey of 600 SMBs, consisting of two samples of 300 – LCM: Core (no minimum annual spend) and LCM: Plus Spenders (minimum annual spend of $25,000).
BIA/Kelsey advises companies in the local media space through consulting and valuation services, research, Continuous Advisory Services and conferences. Since 1983 BIA/Kelsey has been a resource to the media, mobile advertising, telecommunications, Yellow Pages and electronic directory markets, as well as to government agencies, law firms and investment companies looking to understand trends and revenue drivers. BIA/Kelsey's annual conferences draw executives from across industries seeking expert guidance on how companies are finding innovative ways to grow. Additional information is available at http://www.biakelsey.com, on the company's Local Media Watch blog, Twitter (http://twitter.com/BIAKelsey) and Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/biakelsey).