AMI Partners’ yearly small to midsize business (SMB) report revealed that of the 6.6 million SMBs in the U.S., nearly 20 percent will invest money in online storage and collaboration platforms in the next year. According to the release, that will put SMB spending in the market at over $1 billion:
As these plans are realized, the U.S. SMB online storage/collaboration services market will have truly become mainstream. By the end of 2014 we expect U.S. SMBs will spend $1.7 billion within this space, and grow to $4.8 billion in 2019—a CAGR of 23%, as per AMI’s market sizing and forecasting Global Model (GM).
AMI created a 4-tier breakup of the types of SMBs surveyed. It identifies the leaders of this movement to be those SMBs in the top two tiers of its segmentation, showing them currently “driving 70% of cloud spending in this category.” Deepinder Sahni, SVP of Global Sizing and Segmentation for AMI Partners, describes these tiers:
“These high achievers are typically expanding their sales footprint nationally and globally, and as a result, are more prone to encountering data loss/theft for a myriad of reasons—lost laptops at the airport, overused servers breaking down, and so on.”
The storage and collaboration solutions mentioned in the survey include Carbonite, Dropbox and Box, along with security solutions like Barracuda and eVault.
The report goes on to say that vendors looking to sell to SMBs in these categories need to provide products that meet the exact needs of the SMBs, including a more personal customer experience, products priced within their reach, and also a security focus in mind, since the report found that many of the SMBs in the top tiers are prone to data loss issues due to their increase in national and global sales.
Other offerings that entice SMBs in these segments are business continuity and disaster recovery services, and cloud services.
Kim Mays has been editing and writing about IT since 1999. She currently tackles the topics of small to midsize business technology and introducing new tools for IT. Follow Kim on Google+ at google.com/+KimberlyMays6 or Twitter @blumoonky.