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Small, Medium, or Large: Does Business Size Matter?

Business Development

Businesses are classified into three sizes Although it may not seem like a big deal, knowing how others classify your company can make a big difference. This is especially true when selecting technology solutions best suited to your specific needs.

There are several key differentiators to look at when determining which category your business falls into. But don't worry! Our digital marketing Miami experts will assist you in categorizing your company. We'll also let you know when the size of your company matters.

Are you ready? Let's get started!

The Three Business Size Classifications

Most businesses can be classified into three sizes. You may have heard the terms SMB, SME, and large enterprise.

So, what are they, and which of these categories does your company fall under? That’s what we’re going to discuss today!

1. SMB: Small and Medium-Sized Businesses

business owner in front of her restaurant

SMB is an acronym for a small and medium-sized (or mid-sized) business. This type of business is usually defined by how many employees it has and how much money it makes yearly. Both numbers need to be at or below a specific limit.

The reason for classifying an SMB as a distinct type of business is to distinguish it from a large corporation. Large corporations have different rules, regulations, and funding options.

According to the SBA's 2021 census, the number of SMBs in the United States reached 32.5 million, accounting for nearly all (99.9%) businesses in the country.

Determining Characteristics:

  • Number of Employees: 0 to 100 (small-sized businesses); 100 to 999 (medium-sized businesses)
  • Annual Revenue: Less than $50 million (small-sized businesses); $50 million to $1 billion (medium-sized businesses)
  • IT Personnel: 1 to 3
  • CapEx: Limited

Because of the limited CapEx, the most important factors to consider when purchasing technologies are price and ease of use. They prefer to buy software on a pay-as-you-go basis. Furthermore, SMBs have limited geographical boundaries, but due to outsourcing, there may be more remote workers.

In an SMB, the founder, owner, and/or employee(s) may be the same individual. Examples of SMBs include:

  • Consultants
  • Content and Marketing Writers
  • Financial Service Providers
  • Information Technology Professionals
  • Professional Cleaners

2. SME: Small and Medium Enterprises

employee analyzing inventory of products in a warehouse

The term "SME" is more commonly used internationally than "SMB." It is the official market term for international organizations such as the United Nations, World Bank, World Trade Organization, and European Union.

SMEs, like SMBs, are separated from large, multinational corporations because they operate in fundamentally different ways. In addition, SMEs may have more limited upside potential and simpler operations.

Determining Characteristics:

  • Number of Employees: 101 to 500 (as per the European Union)
  • Annual Revenue: $10 million to $1 billion
  • IT Personnel: A small group of 3 to 5 employees
  • CapEx: Some

When it comes to purchasing technology, capabilities, functionality, and reporting are all essential factors to consider. Furthermore, it is common for SMEs to have multiple office locations, some of which are in more remote areas.

Generally, an SMB is associated with the service industry, whereas an SME is involved in manufacturing. Here are some examples of SMEs:

  • Construction
  • Contracting
  • Real Estate
  • Wholesalers
  • Utilities

3. Large Enterprise

Apple store in Hong Kong

Although there aren't many of them, large enterprises account for the vast majority of all business revenue in the United States due to their size and ability to dominate a specific market. According to the SBA Office of Advocacy, there are currently 21,139 large businesses in the United States.

Additionally, large businesses have separate departments for human resources, finances, digital marketing, sales, research and development, and so on. They are run independently by department managers who hire experts in their fields.

Smaller companies can make money by focusing on a single product or service, a small geographic area, or a specific type of customer. On the other hand, large companies tend to appeal to a wide range of customers and are always looking for ways to sell their products and services to new markets.

Determining Characteristics:

  • Number of Employees: Over 1000
  • Annual Revenue: Over $1 billion
  • IT Personnel: Full-time IT personnel (including specialists)
  • CapEx: Large

When it comes to purchasing technology, the most critical considerations for large businesses are guaranteed uptime, advanced features, and safety.  

Furthermore, while most large corporations conduct business in the country where they are headquartered, these corporations may also have operations in many other countries around the world.

One person or a small group usually owns SMBs and SMEs. On the other hand, large businesses are typically set up as corporations to keep the tax burden from their owners.

US corporations that fall into the category of "big business" as of 2015 include:

  • Apple
  • Citigroup
  • General Electric
  • General Motors
  • Goldman Sachs
  • Google
  • JPMorgan Chase
  • Microsoft
  • Walmart

When Does Business Size Matter?

Whether you are an SMB, an SME, or a large enterprise affects many things, including:

  • How financial decisions are made
  • How your technology needs are defined
  • How solution providers treat you during the sales process

When working with an SMB, for example, solution providers are often trained to focus on how the solution saves money and how easy it is to use. They also know that your budget is often a significant factor in your decision. 

In the case of a large enterprise-level company, the provider may put security and advanced features ahead of price and ease of use. If your situation is different from the norm, you should tell the solution providers so they can give you the precise information you need.

Whether you're looking for advanced solution features, a low-cost option, or a platform that's easy to manage, it's essential to know the following:

  • How your business is categorized
  • What the "norms" are for that classification
  • How your needs compare to those "norms"

Knowing these three things allows you to compare services from third parties and select the best one for your company.

Grow Your Business with Digital Marketing

Most businesses begin small, and growing to a mid-sized or even large enterprise does not happen overnight. It takes time.

But if you want to speed up this process, a leading digital marketing company in Miami can help!

At Digital Resource, we can help your business grow thanks to our team of experts who use tried-and-true digital marketing strategies. We can guarantee that you will see significant results, so you can get the leads and conversions you need.

Contact us today for a free consultation.

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