Study: Majority of SMBs Will Increase Ad Spend This Year

A report released in February of this year revealed that a large percentage (87%) of small businesses advertise in some form or another. It would appear that more SMBs are beginning to recognize the value (and perhaps see the positive results) that such advertising investment can provide, as a recent survey of 529 SMBs by The Manifest revealed that 91% plan to increase their ad spend this year.

Most of these SMBs have small advertising budgets, with 37% spending less than $10,000 per year. An additional 20% spend between $10,001 and $50,000. These percentages decrease slightly as budgets rise; however, most small businesses don’t necessarily need to spend a huge sum of money to have a fruitful advertising strategy.


Digital channels are far and away the most popular mediums that SMBs are electing to spend their ad dollars on. Over half (56%) will spend more on social media this year, while 41% will spend more on online advertising (Google search, banner, retargeted and video) and event (10%). However, some do plan to spend more on traditional avenues like print (21%), TV (18%) and radio (15%).

Small businesses are becoming increasingly more aware of the necessity to advertise in order to achieve their goals. According to the survey, 32% said that increasing sales and revenue is their main goal with advertising. The remaining goals included converting leads to customers (12%), standing out from competitors (11%), improving brand awareness (11%), increasing brand trust (8%) and improving search rankings (7%).

So, what channels work best to help SMBs achieve these goals? The results showed that 43% believe social media is their most successful advertising medium, while 18% said online.

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