Those are some of the key findings in an exclusive survey conducted among small businesses -- defined for this survey as those with fewer than 100 employees -- by Small Biz Pipeline.
Small businesses' plans to spend aggressively on PCs and networking products -- including wireless -- certainly represent good news for critical tech sectors that have been hit hard in recent years. The news is also positive because small businesses represent such a huge portion of the U.S. economy: the Small Business Administration says that a full 90% of the 60 million businesses in the U.S. have fewer than 20 employees, while 50% of American workers are employed in companies with fewer than 100 employees.
And the Small Biz Pipeline survey was completed by many of these very small companies: 62% of the 227 respondents work in companies with less than $1 million in revenue, while 62% have fewer than 10 employees.
But these companies have strong technology agendas for this year. Among survey respondents:
- 29% say desktop/laptop computers are their No. 1 strategic priority among planned IT purchases in 2004
- 17% say business automation software -- productivity packages, accounting packs and the like -- are their top priority
- 16% cite networking products and another 14% cite the closely related category of wireless networking products. In all, that's 30% or nearly one in three that say networking products are their top priority.