Independent research commissioned by Corel finds decision makers trust lesser-known suppliers but face confusion when it comes to licensing

Over two thirds (69%) of small businesses in the UK are considering bringing the branding of their companies in-house in order to help with cost savings and boost sales, according to new research commissioned by Corel. This trend continues across Europe with 77% of small businesses in France and 84% in Germany thinking of bringing their branding in-house. As is to be expected in a recession, 64% of small businesses are concerned with cutting costs at present and are looking for new solutions to help with this. Almost all small businesses surveyed (88%) recognised the importance of good branding and the main reason small businesses use an external supplier at present is just because they don’t have the right solutions internally (43%).

“In these times of recession where small businesses are often struggling to keep afloat, they are looking for different and innovative ways to save money and get new customers,” said Amanda Bedborough, Executive Vice President, Global Sales. “As well as being very important for any business to have a strong brand, doing this in-house is a great way for businesses to cut costs as well as it enabling them to be more creative”.

Software brand doesn’t influence choice

When buying software for their business, respondents were surprisingly open to trusting lesser known suppliers. Only 21% of small businesses in the UK cited an established brand name as a factor influencing their choice, although this was higher elsewhere in Europe (43% in France). An overwhelming 75% said they would be willing to use alternative software packages from unfamiliar brands.

Decision makers unsure about licensing

The survey also revealed that small businesses are facing confusion when it comes to purchasing licenses for their software. Nearly a quarter (24%) were unsure of who to go to for advice on licensing and only 26% would think to go to their software manufacturer — which should be the first and easiest port of call. When it comes to managing software licenses, over a third (36%) of small businesses owners across Europe have this responsibility as well as the more pressing demands of running the business.

Amanda Bedborough added: “It is often confusing for smaller businesses to know all the facts when it comes to licensing, often leading to them getting insufficient or incorrect licenses. It is important for software companies to be approachable in this way and to offer helpful advice to their customers”.

Corel surveyed 374 decision makers in small businesses (3-50 employees) in the UK, France and Germany (115 in the UK).

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