When consumers turn to their laptops, tablets and smartphones to do their online shopping this holiday season, they are more likely than ever to direct their web browsers to the homepages of small businesses.
At least that’s the forecast from the recently released 2014 Web.com Consumer & Small Business Perception Survey.
In compiling their report, Web.com surveyed more than 3,000 people, with one-third of those surveyed representing small businesses. An impressive 69 percent of consumers surveyed said they are concerned about security and privacy when shopping online, while 65 percent said they are influenced by those concerns to do more of their online shopping with small businesses.
The primary reason security concerns are driving so many consumers towards small businesses’ sites is that more than twice as many are more concerned about the safety of shopping with a large retailer (27 percent) than with a small one (12 percent). Some 25 percent responded that they are “likely” to change their online shopping behavior, while another 32 percent responded that they “might” change it.
The results of the survey also demonstrated that small businesses are increasingly savvy and experienced when it comes to digital and web-based tools, along with other advanced tech support services.
“Small businesses have an opportunity to think even more strategically about their online and digital presence through the lens of what value they can bring their customers – whether in the form of money, efficiency or security,” said Web.com Chairman and CEO David Brown in a statement related to the report. “In order to gain consumer confidence, small business owners have become more thoughtful and serious about managing their online presence and taking the necessary security measures to keep their customers’ data safe.”
Online holiday shopping continues to grow and expand on the whole among American consumers, with 62 percent of survey respondents saying they would shop online and offline equally this holiday season – and an additional 16 percent responding that they would do more of their shopping online.
The findings in this survey are also consistent with the results of a report released by the University of Phoenix back in September of this year. That report, conducted by the University’s College of Criminal Justice and Security in conjunction with Harris Poll, revealed that identity theft (70 percent) and personal cyber security (61 percent) were the crimes most feared by the more than 2,000 online respondents.
High-profile, high-volume and highly critical cyber security breaches have been uncovered at several large retailers in 2014, including Home Depot, which recently revealed that it lost even more customer data than originally estimated – to the tune of 53 million emails and valuable customer credit card data. Earlier this year, several states announced they would probe a massive data breach at long-established online shopping hub eBay.
Here at Be Different Solutions, we’ve recently blogged about the highly sensitive issues surrounding advanced tech support services like cyber security in today’s always-online and increasingly cluttered and confusing world.
We believe that cyber security and other advanced tech support positions within a company should always be filled by the very best employees and people. These people should be not only available, but also intelligent, accountable, honest and resourceful.
When you opt to outsource advanced tech support professionals and personnel with Be Different Solutions, you may do so with the confidence that you’re getting qualified, quality professionals who are not only motivated and attentive, but also based in one of our two U.S.- or Europe-based offices. Having our people work from one central location considerably improves not just cyber security, but overall accountability and performance.
And we wish a very Happy Holidays to you and yours!