Todd Dewey
Todd Dewey Consultant at Oakton

In what industry sectors do you see the greatest growth for SMEs?

In what industry sectors do you see the greatest growth for the small and medium size businesses?

Top voted answer
Anne Miles

Anne Miles, Managing Director at International Creative Services

I see a growing market for creative services to help small business owners get branding, websites, marketing videos and social media services. The type of creative services that SME's need is very generalist and multi-talented services, to be able to deliver good value but with real credibility at the same time.

There are suppliers jumping on the bandwagon who have no background in creative services and no clue about using creative services to meet business objectives. They're purely focused on the individual project rather than the overall business needs.

While it is a growth area I find SME's are choosing the wrong suppliers, not briefing properly and their choices damage their brand potential. Many are using online job posting services. I've also used services like this myself, but the key is in getting the brief right, knowing what the business objectives are and interpreting that into a creative execution.

Here is a link to another trade magazine Campaign Brief's research on this trend for your interest - it spells out the specific areas of growth on : 

Mobile use is growing fast and here are some more stats on that market:

These figures to me suggest why the need for more creative services is there, and for the type of content needed - it needs 'cut through', to work across platforms and not just be a pretty post card as many mistakenly think. 

Nicole Y. Adams

Nicole Y. Adams, Owner (Translator, Editor, Consultant) at NYA Communications

I strongly believe that the translation and language industry will experience significant growth in 2013, outperforming other industries. According to a market research study by the firm Common Sense Advisory, the market for language services will total $33.5 USD billion this year, and overall, the translation industry has experienced a compound annual growth rate of 12.17%. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects industry growth of 42% this decade, which exceeds growth estimates for other industries evaluated. The demand for translators and interpreters will continue to grow, and most of these operate as sole traders or SMEs. In my opinion, the US will slowly be replaced as the strongest player in the translation industry, and Australian SMEs and sole traders will become increasingly important. Other industries will always depend on the language services industry to get their content translated to succeed in other markets, and machine translation technology will never be advanced enough to replace human translators in the majority of domains.

Anne Miles

Anne Miles, Managing Director at International Creative Services

Just received another update on industry trends. This is for the hard core though 

Murray McDonald

Murray McDonald, Director at Duplex Cleaning Machines

Being within the commercial cleaning sector for the past 20 years, I can say that the commercial cleaning sector is and will continue to see growth in the SME space. 

This doesn’t just relate to commercial cleaners or cleaning businesses, but also cleaning machine manufacturers and cleaning machine distributors/salesman.

From my experience, there are two key questions to ask when it comes to SME industry growth.

Is the industry necessary? i.e. does it tie in with legal requirements, can the sector easily transform into a DIY phenomenon therefore losing its business strength e.g. online shopping.

Commercial cleaning, and all that relates to it, such as commercial cleaning machines and contract cleaners, is continuing to grow because commercial cleaning is not only part of OH&S requirements but is essential for the reputation and presentation of a business. Many businesses outsource commercial cleaning and are not looking to do it themselves. If they are doing it themselves, they are getting machines and implementing processes that make the job easier and quicker as “cleaning” isn’t seen as a business priority yet it needs to be done.

Is there great growth within the sectors that the industry in question markets to?

A key way to spot a growing industry is to look at the industries they market to. Are they growing industries? One of the biggest markets within the commercial cleaning industry is the aged care sector. This is one of Australia’s fastest growing sectors.


Tim Greig

Tim Greig, Owner at Green Galah Pty Ltd

It's interesting how we all believe growth will be in our own sectors! Still, as we are in the similar sector as Murray I have to agree that Aged Care is definitely a growth area and if you can supply or service that sector well, note the emphasis, then you should grow your business going forward.Is the sector that you supply a growth sector? What a great differentiator! We are a growing country, the population is increasing mostly and the swing back out of mining is a good thing.I'm not convinced Nicole that translation is going anywhere in Australia but it would be good to see some local data on that. I would like to think that small business education is a growth area but that would depend on whether small business is a growth area or whether small business is an area that is being beaten out of people as a "career path".

Phil Joel

Phil Joel, Director at SavvySME

Great question Todd. Love to hear from members of the SavvySME community on how they are seeing their business growing in 2013 and what challenges and opportunities they are faced with.