American Express Survey: Over 75% of Small Businesses Are Looking to Consolidate Cash Flow Management Tools

An American Express (NYSE: AXP) survey of 1,100 U.S. small businesses shows that smaller firms are seeking consolidated cash flow management tools “to foster greater efficiency, profitability, and business growth.”

Brett Sussman, Vice President Head of Sales & Marketing, American Express Business Blueprint & Banking, said:

“Small businesses are starved for time and need business-designed tools that can make their lives easier. The data shows streamlined management from integrated, seamless cash flow tools has become critical for them.” 

The Current State of Cash Flow Management

This latest survey stresses “the importance of product integration in cash flow management.”

According to the survey results, 60% of small businesses “use between two to three cash flow management products to run their business with 62% spending at least five hours a week on various platforms and 18% spending 10-20 hours a week.”

With productivity in mind, 73% of all small businesses “are considering changing cash flow management providers to consolidate their data and products into one platform.”

Notably, this survey showed “that 78% of all small business owners agree that having all their business cash flow management products and data in one platform would help grow their confidence as a small business owner.” It also found “that 84% of small business owners also say consolidating their cash flow management tools would save them time each week, with around half saying the savings would be between 3-8 hours.”

A Need for Greater Ease & Cost

Amidst economic headwinds, tailwinds, dips, and growth — cash flow management is a constant “when running a business.”

The survey data shows “that ease of use (43%) and price (36%) are the top two features that small businesses believe their cash flow management tools could improve.”

71% of small business owners report “that consolidation of these tools would have a positive impact on efficiency for their business and 50% report that it would have a positive impact on profitability.”

Time also continues “to be top of mind. 68% of small business owners agree that they would like to spend less time managing their business’ cash flow – giving them more time to spend doing what they love, working on their actual business.”

The Broader Benefits of Streamlined Management

The data also shows “that consolidated cash flow management tools can help boost productivity and simplify running a business.”

Respondents said they would feel better prepared “to manage inventory (37%), solve cash-flow gaps in advance (37%) and expand their business (36%) if given the opportunity to analyze their cash flow management data all in one place.”

Streamlined cash flow management can “have a wide array of benefits for the small business sector, and the data indicates the importance of it to help unlock additional profit, efficiency and time for small businesses.”

Methodology for this survey: Between November 30th – December 15th 2022, Morning Consult “conducted an online survey among 1100 financial decision makers, including 500 at a small small business (<10 employees), 400 at a medium small business (11-100 employees), and 200 at a large small business (101-500 employees). The margin of error for the full sample is +/- 3 percentage points.”

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