74% of SMBs report flat or increasing IT Budgets despite the toughest economic climate

74% of SMBs report flat or increasing IT Budgets despite the toughest economic climate

Alli Campofranco

In April, 2020, Extu globally surveyed more than 2,500 IT Decision makers (ITDMs) and Business Decision makers (BDMs) about how the tough economic climate has impacted their business.

The most surprising finding was that organizations are recognizing IT investment as critical to their success, leaving the majority (74%) of IT budgets flat or increasing.

The survey also shows that the COVID-19 pandemic has:

  • Negatively impacted revenue
  • Caused a steady demand for investment in remote working
  • Caused challenges providing solutions for accessories, hardware, and video conferencing products

SMBs are facing revenue decline

Admittedly, this is not ‘news’. It is no surprise to anyone that revenue has dropped for SMBs with such a radical change in ‘normal’ business. Our survey found that the larger a company is, the better-equipped they’ve been to handle this change, while smaller businesses are experiencing more significant drops in revenue.

Most IT budgets are not cut

The good news for channel partners is that 74% of respondents say that their IT budgets are flat or increasing.

We shared the findings with Terry Moffatt, editor of Channel Marketer Report, and he said:

It’s very encouraging that despite a wide-spread drop in revenue, the vast majority of companies are either not cutting into their IT budgets or are actually increasing them.

For many channel partners though, especially smaller organizations that have been harder hit by COVID-19, it’s critical that the vendors they represent help to reinforce their status as a trusted advisor.

As companies scramble to implement technology to fix issues today and position their businesses for growth post COVID-19, decision-makers will need to be assured that the solution providers they select will deliver the expected business outcome.

It’s critical that technology vendors help their channel partners demonstrate their expertise by providing customer-centric marketing programs.

We think Terry is spot-on regarding the criticality of vendors continuing to support their channel partners. Now more than ever ‘customer-centric marketing programs’ are important to empathize with the customers, and make sure their problems are being heard, and their needs are being met.
As companies are working hard to adapt their businesses in this new remote work environment, our survey also found that providing accessories, hardware and video conferencing solutions to their end users are among the most challenging task for the ITDM and BDMs.

With the majority of IT budgets proving to be stable, if not increased, the surest way out of the revenue slump brought on by this global pandemic will be for channel partners to remain top-of-mind, and positioned as experts with their audience. Channel partners must remain in good-standing with their customers, and vendor support is crucial to that. All decision-makers will be leaning strongly on their solution providers to recommend products that will meet their needs in the short- and long-term future.