Postage Costs 'Limit Business Growth'

EBay UK Survey Finds Cost Of Shipping Hampers Online Firms


Postage and shipping costs are expected to be a major limiting factor to the growth of online SMEs this year, according to a new survey from eBay UK.
The poll found that 31% of small online firms believe postage costs and delivery issues will have an impact on their growth in 2015, while 74% cited the cost of shipping goods overseas.
Meanwhile, 25% named increasing competition, 10% said staff and pension costs and 7% said a lack of suitable staff would hinder their ability to grow.
Over a quarter (27%) of the businesses surveyed also indicated that they want the government to improve postal and delivery services as a way of boosting business growth in the UK.
"We have been calling on government and policy makers for years to do more to level the playing field for Britain’s army of SMEs by reducing postal costs and improving delivery and logistics services," said Tanya Lawler, vice-president of eBay UK.
"These diverse businesses are vital to the UK because they are the engine of our growth at home and abroad, with more than four in five small businesses on eBay in the UK selling internationally."

Expert Opinion
“This study highlights some of the pressures which small businesses reliant on an online presence are currently facing. Postage and shipping costs are obviously something which impact heavily on such companies, but it is interesting to see other concerns emerge, such as the threats of competitors and general issues related to staffing.

“Such findings demonstrate why it is vital that SMEs take care when it comes to decision-making related to growing their staff numbers and handling the issues that this can raise, from pensions to the provision of general employee benefits.

“We would urge any small businesses faced with these issues to speak to legal experts for advice on the approach they should take on such matters, with the ultimate aim of ensuring that all steps are taken to foster a happy and motivated workforce.”
Fergal Dowling, Partner