Across the world, small businesses do not seem to be equal when it comes to facing challenges. Belgian businesses, for example, seem to be doing something right among their European counterparts.
According to data revealed in the recently released FedEx SME Export Report, Belgian small and medium sized businesses appear most optimistic about future revenue growth in two particular areas: eCommerce and export.
Social Media Gaining More Importance
What stands out most prominently is the role of social media and mobile devices in contributing to the success of Belgian small businesses, particularly when it comes to exports.
Today, 79 percent of exporting small and medium sized businesses in Belgium are selling their products via mobile applications. The same percentage of businesses are offering customers the option to make purchases via social platforms.
eCommerce Also Boosts Businesses in Belgium
Not surprisingly, eCommerce has also grown into a key revenue-generating channel for small exporters in Belgium. According to the report, 85 percent of Belgian exporting small businesses generate revenue from eCommerce via desktop devices, representing 16 percent of their total revenue. However, mobile and social selling are clearly gaining.
Further, Belgium small businesses appear to have the highest percentage of B2B eCommerce transactions among all small exporters surveyed across the globe, representing 67 percent of their average revenue.
Businesses Are Feeling Positive
Encouraged by their increasing revenues, Belgian businesses are feeling confident about their future growth prospects.
The study has found 53 percent of Belgian small businesses believe export revenue within Europe will increase, compared to just 34 percent of European businesses surveyed.
What U.S. Businesses Can Learn From Their Belgian Small Business Counterparts
Belgian small businesses have proved how eCommerce and social media can be leveraged to boost revenue, particularly in exporting. They have also succeeded in tying it together with a solid mobile marketing strategy.
U.S. small businesses seeking to achieve similar results in exporting should take a page out of the Belgian small business playbook. Small U.S. exporters already vastly out number their larger competitors. Focus on eCommerce, mobile and social media to even out the playing field.
For the report, FedEx Express (NYSE:FDX) conducted 9,000 interviews with senior executives in small businesses.
Belgian Flag Photo via Shutterstock