As part of the DFA Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Survey, we asked them about their banking channel preferences. Since we last ran the study, there has been a considerable shift to using mobile devices as the preferred access device for banking services. Use of a fixed PC is down. EFTPOS service by mobile device have also proved popular. Many now use on-line payments more, have multiple mobile devices and also use social media in connection with their business. Our view is that players now need to prioritize the deployment of mobile solutions for SME customers, as they are prepared to switch providers to get more comprehensive digital services. This should replace an omnichannel strategy.
The DFA Small and Medium Business Survey shows that overall borrowing across SMEs has remained quite flat since the impact of the GFC. The chart below shows the trend for different types of borrowing.
The main demand for credit comes from the need for more working capital (in our research, the number of debtor days remains extended), whereas business expansion does not have much focus. SMEs are in survival mode.
Several factors are impacting SMEs confidence, but it is NOT the availability of credit which is the main issue.
These are some examples of the research contained in our SME Research Report.