This Shocking Stat Reveals How Small Businesses Really Talk to Clients

Andre Johnston
April 9, 2024
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Effective communication is the backbone of successful client relationships for small businesses. But in the ever-evolving digital landscape, which channels reign supreme? Let's dive into the data and uncover the most common forms of client communication

Email: The Reigning Champion

Despite the rise of newer platforms, email remains the undisputed king of small business communication. According to a survey by Clutch, 73% of small businesses cite email as their primary communication method with clients.


  • Professional and formal
  • Allows for detailed communication
  • Provides a paper trail for reference


  • Can be overwhelming with cluttered inboxes
  • Potential for messages to be overlooked or marked as spam
  • Lacks real-time interaction

Phone Calls: The Trusted Companion

While email dominates, the trusty phone call still holds a significant place in small business communication. A study by BrightLocal found that 28% of small businesses prefer phone calls as their primary client communication channel.


  • Immediate and real-time communication
  • Conveys tone and emotion
  • Facilitates problem-solving and negotiation


  • Can be intrusive or inconvenient
  • Lacks a written record for reference
  • Requires both parties to be available simultaneously

Direct Messaging (DM): The Rising Star

As social media platforms continue to gain traction, direct messaging (DM) is emerging as a popular communication channel for small businesses. According to a survey by Sprout Social, 63% of consumers are more likely to engage with a brand that offers direct messaging.


  • Convenient and accessible on-the-go
  • Allows for quick responses and real-time interaction
  • Facilitates casual and friendly conversations


  • Perceived as less professional or formal
  • Limited character count can hinder detailed communication
  • Potential for messages to get lost or overlooked

Other Channels: Exploring the Possibilities

While the aforementioned channels dominate the small business landscape, other communication methods are also gaining traction:

Chatbots: Chatbots directly on websites use artificial intelligence to simulate human conversations and provide automated responses. They can handle routine queries, qualify leads, and direct customers to human agents when needed.

Video Conferencing: A study by Lifesize found that 83% of businesses consider video conferencing crucial for their operations.

The key to successful client communication lies in understanding your audience's preferences and tailoring your approach accordingly. By leveraging the strengths of each channel and adapting to evolving trends, small businesses can foster strong relationships and deliver exceptional customer experiences.

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Andre Johnston

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