By Daniel Hunter

A quarter of UK small enterprises — or nearly 290,000 individual businesses - have seen their websites crash or become inaccessible to customers due to poor web hosting, a new report reveals.

One in ten small businesses impacted by web crashes believes the unscheduled down-time significantly impacted their trading, according to the figures released by technology company, BaseKit.

Three quarters (74%) of small businesses say being online is important to drumming up new leads and to their company reputation. Yet website crashes are hampering business success, as is trying to keep pace with changes in technology and customer behaviour says the BaseKit Small Business Report.

Just over half of all small businesses admit they are struggling to keep up with the speed of technology change and feel they are becoming “digital dinosaurs”.

Only one in five small businesses is able to accept payment for goods online for example and only 9% has a site that is compatible with smart-phones or tablets. This is despite further research that shows consumers spend approximately £116 a month shopping online and 6% of shoppers prefer to check-out using their mobile phone.

“Small businesses invest a lot of time and resource in creating their websites so it’s understandable they get frustrated when poor web hosting means that their sites crash resulting in lost customers and revenues," Simon Best, co-founder of BaseKit, said.

“That said, start-ups and enterprise companies aren’t always helping themselves to make the most of what the web has to offer. We were surprised by how little functionality some websites have — meaning companies aren’t cashing in on the growing ecommerce trend.”

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