IAB UK

Powering Up: Helping UK SMEs unlock the value of digital advertising

Powering Up: The Study

Drawing on evidence from nearly 1,200 UK SMEs, ’Powering Up’ explores how small businesses are using digital advertising, where they feel it excels and where more support is needed from the digital industry to help the market’s recovery in the wake of COVID-19. 

The study, which has been conducted with MTM, shows that while SMEs’ uptake of digital is high and perceptions positive, there are also opportunities for digital advertisers to provide more accessible guidance for SMEs, to encourage greater use of online channels and maximise the value they deliver. 

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Sme research report

Watch our summary of the findings

Current usage of digital advertising among SMEs

60%

use paid digital advertising

63%

SAY THAT DIGITAL ADVERTISING PROVIDES A GOOD ROI

45%

OF ALL DIGITAL AD SPEND ESTIMATED TO COME FROM SMEs

Barriers to using digital advertising

32%

say it's too expensive

36%

say it's not necessary/relevant

36%

rate their ability to use digital advertising effectively as ‘not good’

"As we deal with the economic effects of COVID-19, digital advertising is continuing to play a crucial role for many SMEs, but more support from our industry is needed to maximise the role that it can play to boost recovery. For us and our members, the next phase of this work will be acting on this insight to ensure that we are effectively supporting SMEs throughout this period and beyond."

Elizabeth Lane, Head of Research and Measurement, IAB UK