Facebook: 1.5M SMBs Have Pages

Thanks to Eric Eldon on Inside Facebook for pointing this data out: “More than 1.5 million local businesses have active Pages on Facebook.”

This is not the same as having 1.5 million advertisers, and the SMBs are there in large part because pages are free. However, to put this in perspective, Facebook now has more SMB Pages than AT&T has SMB advertisers. Google has more than a million SMBs (though no specific number is available) that have claimed listings or added content at the LBC.

Most impressively, this number is roughly double what was previously reported (700k) only a few months ago. The implications of this are fairly clear:

  • Facebook has a “captive” audience of SMBs to sell stuff to
  • It will probably be only a year or so before Facebook has an equal number of SMBs on its platform (with pages) as the US YP industry has advertisers (3 or so million)

(Intuit claims 6 million “SMB relationships” and Amex says it has 8 million SMB cardholders.)

SMBs don’t know how to “work” social media for the most part or how to measure ROI. How often are these pages updated or news feeds used for example? In other words, they have a presence but that presence may not be a particularly effective marketing vehicle for them — just as a static website without more doesn’t do much for an SMB these days. However these SMBs are showing up (again because it’s free) and have a general sense that it’s important for them to be on Facebook.

Facebook, if it introduces some compelling products for SMB advertisers (beyond Facebook Ads), could become a threat to companies like Yelp (not consumer usage but advertiser acquisition).

Believe you me Facebook understands these trends and their potential implications. Now let’s see what happens.

___

Update: Another way to look at this the following: 1.5M represents roughly 15% of what might be considered the addressable SMB market (10M). I’ve previously asserted that self-service would work for 10% to maybe 20% of the market if the products were compelling and/or simple enough.

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12 Responses to “Facebook: 1.5M SMBs Have Pages”

  1. CJSIII Says:

    Will be interesting to see how MerchantCircle holds up against the acquisition juggernaut in Facebook. MC tends to be in less urban areas, and they do have the IAC/Citysearch relationship that could facilitate ad products and upsales, but the reach of FB will enable them some time to try and figure out the ad-upsell model

  2. Greg Sterling Says:

    Yes . . MC is in less represented areas. SMB ad space, as you know, isn’t winner take all.

  3. Jean-Pascal Lion Says:

    Greg…great pick…the first thing I did when my partners and I did open our Bike shop was to create a page on facebook..Then I invited,last sunday, my friends, and their friends…I can tell you…it sure works extremely well, the shop was full, and most people did buy something…. next step will be to test advertising on facebook and invent new events…I am just starting to play with it, but I have the feeling this could become fast a huge platform for SMBs…..

  4. Greg Sterling Says:

    Thanks JP. Hope all is well.

  5. George Bounacos Says:

    We just put our 3rd small business on Facebook ads this week. Part of 2010’s plans for each has been to introduce microtargeting.

    I’m interested, Greg, on your opinion regarding FB’s $30K monthly spend for anything other than self-service *and* the inability to use more than one credit card per account. As I told a FB rep the other day, I don’t need a rep, but the ability to run multiple clients out of one console would be nice. The only way we do that now is if we front the advertising cost, which is just plain silly.

    George

  6. Greg Sterling Says:

    George:

    I was unaware of that policy, which needs to be changed if they’re going to work with SMB rep firms like yours. And they would be wise to adopt your suggestion. Google has similar problems/challenges.

  7. T or F: 45% of SMBs Don’t Want New Leads? « Screenwerk Says:

    [...] These are being utilized to varying degrees and with variable effectiveness (mostly ineffectively). For example, most SMBs don’t know exactly what to do with a Facebook page. [...]

  8. MA Sinclair Says:

    Interesting, do we know how much SME in Canada have their profile page on FB?

    I would say there’s a pool of 27M business in the US so it’s more a 5% ratio than 15% for self serve

  9. Greg Sterling Says:

    Facebook has even greater penetration in Canada than the US but I don’t know if that extends to SMBs equally. But I would assume there’s a comparable adoption on a % basis.

  10. SMB ‘Social Media Presence’ Now at 24% « Screenwerk Says:

    [...] ‘Social Media Presence’ Now at 24% By Greg Sterling Facebook recently said that it had 1.5 active (key word) SMB profiles/pages on the site. That’s at least 10% of the [...]

  11. Mobile – All Business is Local | mobile zeitgeist Says:

    [...] Die Beliebtheit sprengt alle Rekorde [...]

  12. Facebook Offers Its Own Window Decals « Screenwerk Says:

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