SMEs receive nothing for business referrals

Small businesses are missing out on the benefits of business referrals, according to research by OpinionMatters on behalf of IT company Easynet Connect.

The survey of 275 executives found that 81 per cent of SMEs regularly refer business but earn no financial reward in return.

SMEs typically make three referrals a month, with an average value of £7,500. This amounts to £270,000 of uncompensated business referrals a year.

Chris Stening, managing director of Easynet Connect, admits that referring business can provide non-financial benefits such as strengthening a company’s reputation and contacts, but adds that cash incentives would boost the practice.

Says Stening: ‘If moderate incentives encourage more businesses to take the time to refer the services they enjoy, then the whole business world would run more efficiently. Good suppliers would be rewarded with more sales, and those that sing their praises would get a return on their networking as well as build their own profile.’

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