Business VoIP Featured Article

It's Time for CSPs to Focus on SMBs

December 06, 2022

With worries of an economic downturn in the wind, concern over how it will affect the market and business resiliency in the coming year is high. For communications service providers (CSPs), the golden ticket could be in the sector they haven’t placed enough focus on – small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs).

While small businesses are cost-conscious and working with smaller budgets, most of them are aware of the important role tech spending plays in their growth and they aren't afraid to put up their annual revenues to improve operations. New research released from Beyond Now, an ecosystem orchestration and digital platform provider, looks at how the SMB market has vast, untapped potential for CSPs.

What it found was that these businesses are not afraid to invest in the right solutions and will even be increasing their investments in technologies in the coming years.

“Against the backdrop of an economic downturn, SMBs want to achieve business resilience through technology, and CSPs should be the ones to step up and help them. But SMBs are in a hurry and, traditionally, CSPs have not done enough to get to know their SMB customers,” said Angus Ward, CEO, Beyond Now.

What that means is time is running out for CSPs if they intent on becoming the provider segment of choice for SMBs. The market is hot for SMB business – failure to act will put CSPs’ revenue streams at risk as their competitors swoop in to save the day. MSPs are quickly adding to their service portfolios are chomping at the bit to grab more of the MSP communications market.

CSPs: It’s time to reacquaint yourselves with today’s SMBs: 85% of SMBs recognize the importance of technology to the success of their businesses; and 51% rank technology as very-to-crucially important.

The things SMBs are looking for are a single platform and better administration and management of the solutions. Sixty-four percent of respondents said they want technology providers to work together and build joint solutions and 65 percent of SMBs said they’d prefer buying everything from one source and would pay a premium to do so. There’s where MSPs are building an advantage by becoming all-in-one resources for their customers.

SMBs are turning to technology to help digitize their businesses, improve business growth, customer experience, and increase efficiency in terms of time and human resources. They’re not just thinking about IT security and the cloud. Many SMBs are also recognizing the potential in technologies like Blockchain, AI, Machine Learning, Edge and Robotics.

“It’s fascinating that at a time when the industry is so focused on enabling digital transformation for large enterprises, that many SMBs are already digitally transformed businesses,” Ward added. “There is a rich vein of revenue available to CSPs if they can get their SMB value proposition right. That means building solutions around SMB needs, finding repeatable patterns and embracing digital channels that are key for developing viable business models.”

What it really means is building a digital services marketplace to can deliver the breadth of services SMBs require at a scale to serve a large number of clients and their end-users. It also means collaborating with partners to create the solution portfolios that meet the diverse requirements of the SMB sector.

It can be done – there are players who have proven out the model. Whether CSPs see the opportunity – and the closing door if they don’t act quickly – is another story.

Edited by Erik Linask



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