An Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) study has found that 60 per cent of local businesses and two-thirds of small businesses still do not have a Web presence.
Companies that weren't listed as part of an online listing or Web directory were those where there was a correlation between the number of people employed by a business and the probability of the business having a Web presence.
It showed that more than 70 per cent of businesses with less than four people lacked a Web existence.
Google product specialist, Kate Conroy, said “If you’re not on the Web and cannot be found, your business is simply invisible. Having a website is just as important as having a phone or mail address. It’s a big risk you don’t have to take.”
Arts and recreation services topped the list of businesses with a Web presence (65 per cent), followed by information media and telecommunications (58 per cent) and wholesale trade (57 per cent). The lowest occurrence of Web presence was reported by businesses within agriculture, forestry and fishing, with only 11 per cent.
Of businesses accessing the Internet, broadband was chosen as the main connection type by almost all businesses in information media and telecommunications.
According to Conroy, it is essential for SMBs – tax accountants in particular, to have a Web presence during the tax season.
Google and MYOB suggest accounting consultants get on the Web now, or risk losing a share of business to competitors who are online.
“Since April, we’ve seen a 1000 per cent increase in Google searches for a range of tax related keywords. We’re now seeing over 70,000 searches a month that indicate people are looking for accountants and professional financial advice online,” Conroy said.
Earlier this year, Google partnered with MYOB to aid SMEs obtain an online presence with the Getting Aussie Business Online program.