HARLOW, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - May 17, 2012) - Four in five (81%) of Britain's SMEs, amounting to 3,645,000* businesses, believe that the Royal Mail's rate change will negatively impact their business. Of these, 7% fear that their business won't survive the threat.
National research conducted amongst 1,000 SMEs by Pitney Bowes revealed that 15% would consider using a franking machine to avoid the price hike. However, with a 30% jump in first class stamps, 45% of the SMEs claimed they will be changing how they communicate by sending less post and relying increasingly on email. In addition, 25% revealed they would start using second class post more frequently.
Worryingly, almost three quarters (69%) felt that the information provided about the changes was 'poor and confusing' and 17% admitted that they didn't know where to seek further information.
Phil Hutchison, marketing director of Pitney Bowes, said "The Royal Mail's announcement inevitably affects Britain's SMEs and one in two SMEs with 101 to 200 employees fear the impact of the postal rate change on their businesses.
"It's crucial that businesses don't abandon physical mail in order to avoid high postage rates; physical mail still has an important part to play. Successful customer communications depends on a balance of mediums."
Pitney Bowes is urging SMEs to review their communications strategy and consider moving to metered mail, which can cut costs immediately whilst saving time and delivering other benefits such as higher opening rates.
Pitney Bowes has published comprehensive advice online at www.ratechange.co.uk as well as offering specific product options suitable for small and micro businesses.
*Based on there being 4,500,000 British SMEs, according to statistics from the Department for Business Innovation & Skills - http://www.bis.gov.uk/assets/biscore/statistics/docs/b/bpe_2011_stats_release.pdf.
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About Pitney Bowes
Delivering more than 90 years of innovation, Pitney Bowes provides software, hardware and services that integrate physical and digital communications channels. Long known for making its customers more productive, Pitney Bowes is increasingly helping other companies grow their business through advanced customer communications management. Pitney Bowes is a $5.3 billion company with 29,000 employees worldwide. Pitney Bowes: Every connection is a new opportunity™. www.pb.com
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