For some SMBs — especially the smallest, with fewer than 20 employees — AI holds little appeal.
Of the 250 very small businesses (VSBs, with fewer than 20 employees) we surveyed in our recent SMB Pulse, 91 said they aren’t interested in AI, as did 18 of the 150 small businesses (SBs, with 20 to 99 employees). Almost all SMBs with 100 to 500 employees are interested in AI.
The primary reason these VSBs and SBs aren’t interested in AI? They don’t see a benefit. Roughly three in five uninterested VSBs and SBs simply don’t understand how their business will be better off with AI.
In addition, many uninterested VSBs and SBs don’t see a specific application for AI in their business — almost 50% of VSBs, and fully two-thirds of SBs, report that they don’t see how to put AI to work in their company.
SMBs Not Interested in AI: Rationale
This data suggests a huge knowledge gap among smaller SMBs about AI’s potential – and as a result, a huge opportunity for AI marketers to educate smaller SMBs on AI benefits and applications.
Our research also shows a slight uptick in concern among VSBs and SBs since our April AI survey about a lack of in-house skills to assess and implement AI. This highlights a need for support and customer service if you want to convince smaller SMBs to deploy AI.
Given that the satisfaction rate among SMBs currently using AI is very high, and SMBs are articulate about its benefits, customer testimonials and data are great tools to sell smaller SMBs on AI.
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