SMEs Display Resilience Amid Economic Downturn, Survey

3 mins read
Economic Downturn

Amid the economic downturn and challenges, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across Europe’s key markets are demonstrating remarkable resilience and optimism, according to a recent survey conducted by, a prominent B2B e-commerce platform.

Despite facing ongoing hurdles such as inflationary pressures and supply chain disruptions, SMEs in the United Kingdom, Germany, and France are maintaining a positive outlook for business growth. The survey, commissioned by and conducted by the reputable research firm Censuswide, involved polling 1,500 decision-makers from companies with fewer than 150 employees.

The findings from the survey shed light on the prevailing sentiments among SMEs in Europe’s largest economies:

Over two-thirds of SMEs in the UK (68%), Germany (68%), and France (78%) expressed greater confidence in business opportunities compared to the previous year. This upbeat outlook reflects the resilience and adaptability of these enterprises in navigating the complexities of the current economic landscape.

Despite the overall optimism, concerns about inflation loom large for many SMEs. In January, inflation in the UK stood at 4%, although lower than the 11.1% recorded in late 2022, it remains double the Bank of England’s target of 2%. Similarly, German and French inflation rates hover around 3%, posing significant challenges for businesses. Nearly half (47%) of UK SMEs and 41% of German SMEs identified inflation as their primary concern, highlighting the impact of rising costs on profitability and budgeting for growth.

The survey also revealed that supply chain disruptions continue to pose challenges for SMEs across Europe during this economic downturn. Fluctuations in supply chain dynamics and disruptions in the flow of goods have added complexity to business operations, requiring SMEs to adapt quickly and implement robust strategies to mitigate risks and maintain operational continuity.

Jijay Shen,’s General Manager for Europe, emphasised the importance of addressing sourcing and supply chain issues to support SMEs in realising their growth aspirations. Proactive measures, including leveraging technology, fostering strategic partnerships, and enhancing operational efficiency, are essential for SMEs to navigate the current economic landscape successfully.

The survey findings highlight the resilience and adaptability of European SMEs in the face of economic challenges. While uncertainties persist, proactive strategies and collaborative efforts are vital for SMEs to capitalise on opportunities, mitigate risks, and achieve sustainable growth in the evolving business environment.