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Small Businesses Turn To DIY Tools For Digital Marketing

Written by Ken Gaebler
Published: 5/29/2014

Small business digital usage survey shows that majority of small business owners created their websites using DIY tools and approximately four out of five act as their own webmasters.

Small business owners have to navigate tricky waters when it comes to digital marketing. In a world that is becoming more digital by the day, a robust online and social presence is rapidly becoming a prerequisite for business growth. But digital marketing costs money--money that small businesses simply can't afford to spend.

DIY Digital Tools

So what's the answer? For many small businesses, it's DIY digital tools. Recently, the Wall Street Journal Online posted the results of a Small Business Digital Usage survey conducted by marketing provider Webs. The survey showed that while 63 percent of small business owners are using digital products to market their businesses, 59 percent created their websites using DIY tools and 80 percent serve as their own webmasters.

Likewise, small businesses are extremely interested in social media marketing, but are using accessible platforms like Facebook to do social themselves--88% of small businesses surveyed use Facebook as their primary social media marketing channel.

"Small business owners are rapidly embracing digital DIY tools to build their online and social media presence," said Scott Bowen, vice president and general manager at Webs. "The adoption rate of social media platforms among small businesses is accelerating as they look to create brand awareness and engagement with their customers quickly and cost effectively."

In other findings:

  • 43% of small business owners selected a site domain name at or before the time they launched their companies.
  • Most owners (63%) said their primary motivation for creating a website was to generate more leads, followed by showcasing products (44%) and providing basic information about their companies (42%).
  • The top reasons why Facebook users created pages for their companies were customer acquisition (62%), building a network of followers (50%) and improving brand awareness (45%).

While the availability of DIY tools has clearly been a boon to small businesses, it's important for entrepreneurs to maintain a clear distinction between marketing versus sales. In many cases, digital assets can be leveraged to increase sales revenue. However, each component of the brand's digital marketing strategy should be connected to a specific goal--and for some digital elements, the goal may or may not directly result in additional sales.

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