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Survey: 2024 Is a “Make-or-Break” Year for Small Business

Survey: 2024 Is a “Make-or-Break” Year for Small Business

Ivana Shteriova March 14, 2024
March 14, 2024
Slack surveyed 2,000 small business owners (half from the tech or retail sector) on what they thought about the future of their businesses. The business messaging platform discovered that as many as 40% of business owners see 2024 as a “make or break” year for their companies.

On a positive note, 71% of small business owners are optimistic about their business this year, and 49% reported that their businesses performed somewhat or much better than what they predicted for 2023, while only 21% reported worse-than-anticipated results.

Despite the generally positive momentum among small business owners, as many as 32% are worried their business won’t survive past 2024. Almost half (47%) cite inflation and economic conditions as their biggest worry, followed by concerns about the need to raise prices (32%), and the rising competition (24%).

Despite the AI boom, only 16% of business owners are worried they need to update their technology but lack resources, and 14% feel the technology they’re using is getting outdated.

Regardless of their worries, small business owners are determined to see their businesses thriving, with three quarters of respondents already taking steps to “alleviate concerns.” 51% have increased their marketing budgets to attract new customers, while 45% are building emergency funds and 43% are exploring new technologies that could help them boost productivity and efficiency.

Owners believe that these new technologies will have a positive impact on their businesses, with 60% expecting to increase their budget in 2024 and 50% planning to invest more in technology and infrastructure. Of the 35% of business owners excited to implement new tech in 2024, 49% are eyeing productivity and collaboration tools, and 53% are considering investing in new software tools.

In fact, half of small business owners surveyed have already implemented some type of AI technology. 41% invested in technologies for productivity and collaboration, while 34% implemented new communication tools.

“The state of small businesses in 2024 reflects a clear desire to maximize efficiency with limited resources,” said Jaime DeLanghe, Vice President of Product Management at Slack. “Regardless of what sector the business is in, productivity and collaboration tools can be a key driver of businesses’ growth and productivity.”

Recently, Slack introduced AI capabilities within its messaging platform. Early tests of its new AI features have shown that a user can save an average of 97 minutes per week using these new tools.

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