Aussie small businesses call for more support

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Friday, 09 February, 2018

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One in three Australian small businesses struggle to set up shop at home due to a lack of government support and technology infrastructure, according to a survey from cloud provider Reckon.

Nearly half (45%) of small business owners polled by the company had needed to wind up a previous failed venture.

The survey found that respondents want greater government support in the form of better tax offsets (53%), improved internet connectivity to help them build an omnichannel presence (32%) and more start-up incentives (26%).

Just over half (54%) of respondents fear being left behind in the digital economy as a result of Australia’s slow internet speeds, and 83% are not confident in the government’s ability to complete the nbn rollout within the next two years as promised.

Small business respondents are also deeply concerned about the entry of Amazon into the Australian market proper, with more than 70% believing that the government is not doing enough to protect them from disruption by the e-commerce giant.

Other major challenges being faced by respondents that have the potential to negatively impact profitability include declining customer demand (38%), government policies (33%) and cash flow issues (27%).

“The Australian small business landscape has undergone massive changes in the past few years alone, the most major being the shift from traditional bricks-and-mortars to online. With that, local businesses now find themselves having to compete in the global marketplace,” Reckon Managing Director for ANZ Sam Allert said.

“For small businesses to survive and thrive online in the presence of global players like Amazon, not only do they require a more robust and reliable technology infrastructure, they need to become more digital savvy. What we need to be doing as a nation is enhance our overall technology capabilities. To achieve this, there needs to be a concerted effort between the government, private sector and small businesses.”

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