Snapshot: Trends in Small and Medium Manufacturing Businesses

When the in-person, no-mask world pivoted to a socially distanced, work-from-anywhere model, small and medium businesses (SMBs) in the manufacturing industry felt the impact. Supply chain issues affected these businesses like no other, compounded by the same time crunch and cash constraints that hit other industries. In fact, according to the fourth edition of our “Small and Medium Business Trends Report,” more than half of manufacturing SMBs (52%) in August 2020 cited revenue decline over the past six months. Data from our recently released “Trends in Manufacturing Report” also shows that more than nine in 10 manufacturers report impacts on their customer demand, capacity, distribution, and logistics, as well as sales and customer service capabilities.

But on the whole, manufacturing SMBs remain optimistic about the future of their business by a nearly 2-to-1 ratio (66% optimistic vs. 34% not optimistic), even as they continue to weather the pandemic and plan for future challenges.

We took a deeper look into the data from our fourth edition “Small and Medium Business Trends Report,” and focused on learning what manufacturing businesses are doing to keep up with changes during the pandemic.

Key insights

  • 88% of manufacturing SMBs cite bringing innovative offerings to market as a challenge in meeting customer expectations.
  • 41% of manufacturing SMBs say they’ve adopted technology to help digitize internal communications in preparation for future crises.
  • More than half of manufacturing SMBs (54%) cite gaining a unified view of the customer as a benefit they’ve realized to date.

A look into how manufacturing small and medium businesses are navigating the pandemic.

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