The state of small businesses is an important barometer in measuring the strength of the American economy. In order to find out what solutions best help small businesses succeed, Palo Alto Software asked small business owners directly. A report of the results of their survey of nearly 400 entrepreneurs revealed that despite economic hardships and political drama in the past year, they look forward to growth in 2014. The majority of small business owners — 91 percent —expects to see increased revenue, and 76 percent plan to hire new employees.
The rocky political landscape is not of great concern to most of these small businesses. What is of great concern — and of interest to VARs and managed services providers — is how they can better plan and track their finances. The survey found that more than half of small business owners who witnessed growth over the past year attribute it primarily to thinking more strategically about their businesses. The report also indicates that small businesses that budget and track their business financials regularly “are more likely to expect higher growth and more hiring in 2014.” The report reveals, a small percentage have begun to explore cloud-based options for tracking, the majority of small business owners are still relying on spreadsheets like Excel.
The knowledge that small business who monitor their key metrics more often expect to see higher revenue growth in 2014 than those who do not is of value to VARs. VARs can help their clients grow in 2014 by providing solutions that make financial planning and tracking easier. Small business owners can then focus on what they do best — developing better services and products for their customers.