Internet advertising gives SMEs a boost

Small businesses have the ideal opportunity to raise their profiles on the internet, and Internet Advertising is a good way of doing this, an expert has pointed out.

Linus Gregoriadis, head of research at e-consultancy, said that, although it could be hard for firms to compete if they are selling generic items, there are opportunities for those selling niche products.

"There are a lot of opportunities for small businesses to raise their visibility through the internet," he said.

"Small businesses should … consider sponsored listing, which could be worth investing in, but [they] have to experiment and see what works for them."

Mr Gregoriadis added that it was worth smaller firms considering local search, something that search leader Google is "quite big on".

A recent Federation of Small Businesses report found that less than one fifth of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) were trading online in 2005, with fewer than one per cent generating sales through the web.

Although this figure may have grown since then, the study nevertheless indicates the benefits that SMEs are likely to derive if they get to grips with the internet before their rivals, and tap into the audience of millions of web users.

A report by eMarketer indicates that business to consumer commerce on the internet is set to grow by 25 per cent each year until 2011.

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