ATLANTA, May 1, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Social consciousness is spilling over into U.S. consumers' shopping and dining habits, according to the 2018 Cox Business Consumer Pulse on Small Businesses. Seventy-one percent of survey respondents said they would spend more money at a small business if it supported a positive social or environmental cause.
While 68 percent of consumers think small business owners should openly promote the causes they support, more than half would stop supporting a small business if the causes they supported weren't in line with the consumer's social and/or environmental views.
Diversity and inclusivity also factor into consumer support of a small business. Seventy-one percent said it is important to them that the small businesses they frequent practice diverse and inclusive hiring. When asked how important supporting women-owned businesses was to them, nearly one-third of consumers indicated it was significantly meaningful.
Additionally, consumers are placing more importance on the technology offered by the small businesses they frequent. When asked what type of technology would enhance the customer experience at their favorite small businesses, the following were the top three choices:
- 41 percent – Free and reliable WiFi
- 21 percent – Email or online product recommendations based on past purchases
- 18 percent – Point-of-Sale (POS) that accepts mobile payments
Nearly 40 percent of consumers ages 18 to 34 think small businesses should adopt Amazon's "checkout-less" shopping model.
"The cards have never been more stacked against small business survival," said Steve Rowley, executive vice president of Cox Business. "With the growth of Amazon and e-commerce in general, small brick-and-mortar businesses have to rely on technology in order to deliver great shopping and dining experiences that keep consumers coming back."
Using technology to power better experiences at small businesses is important to consumers and is becoming an important factor when consumers think about their cities too. Forty-two percent of consumers say their city is starting to adopt "smart" technology – applications that combine people, connected devices, data and process to improve city operations and the city experience.
"At Cox, we believe that smart cities create smart businesses," said Rowley. "We are aggressively investing in our network to power the smart homes, smart businesses and smart cities of the future."
For more details on the 2018 Cox Consumer Pulse on Small Businesses, visit http://www.coxblue.com/. Follow @CoxBusiness on Twitter and join the conversation using #GoSmall to share the results with your network.
About the 2018 Cox Business Consumer Pulse on Small Businesses
Cox Business commissioned a blind survey of American consumers in April of 2018. Respondents to the online survey included a total of 1,129 consumers. The margin of error for this survey is plus or minus 3 percent.
About Cox Business
The commercial division of Cox Communications, Cox Business provides voice, data and video services for more than 350,000 small and regional businesses nationwide, including healthcare providers, K-12 and higher education, financial institutions and federal, state and local government organizations.
The organization also serves most of the top tier wireless and wireline telecommunications carriers in the U.S. through its wholesale division. Cox Business is consistently ranked as one of the top Ethernet providers and recognized by third parties for award winning business telecom service. For more information, please visit www.cox.com.
About Cox Communications
Cox Communications is a broadband communications and entertainment company, providing advanced digital video, Internet, telephone and home security and automation services over its own nationwide IP network. The third-largest U.S. cable company, Cox serves approximately 6 million residences and businesses. Cox Business is a facilities-based provider of voice, video and data solutions for commercial customers, and Cox Media is a full-service provider of national and local cable spot and digital media advertising. Cox is known for its pioneering efforts in broadband, voice and commercial services, industry-leading customer care and its outstanding workplaces. For 10 years, Cox has been recognized as a best operator for women by Women in Cable Telecommunications; Cox has ranked among DiversityInc's Top 50 Companies for Diversity 12 times. More information about Cox Communications, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cox Enterprises, is available at www.cox.com and www.coxmedia.com.
SOURCE Cox Communications