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CITRIX-Web Conferencing Saves Time & Money for Small and Medium Enterprises

Web conferencing saves SMEs and Corporations on sales travel, prospecting, sales and service time

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Web conferencing as a multi-purpose business tool has undergone tremendous growth in adoption and usage over the past few years.

This nimble communications network offers remarkable attractiveness to Small to Medium Enterprise (SME) users by saving travel budgets, providing more person-to-person opportunities for participants, and offers more frequency than can be accomplished with trade shows and in-person sales calls.

The ability to conduct effective virtual meetings using web conferencing has grown from a technical novelty to a mature, widely deployed solution in less than a decade.

Service providers such as Citrix GoToMeeting Corporate, the sponsor of this research, combine web conferencing technology, network infrastructure, and support personnel to offer their customers a complete turnkey solution – without the need for having (or consuming) IT resources.

Bottom line: the effectiveness and economics of web conferencing not only offer a convenient alternative to traditional in-person meetings, but also apply to new meeting situations that only become possible by using a virtual medium.

In the U.S. alone, 99.7% of U.S. businesses were SME’s in 2000. According to the Small Business Administration, they pay between 44% and 45% of the overall U.S. private payroll.

Citrix Online, a leading player in web conferencing services has a strong presence among Small to Medium Enterprise (SME) users. A 2006 research study was conducted among SMEs.

Preview of some of the Web Conferencing survey results

  • Web conferencing in SME’s has actually become more popular than meeting in person (41% vs. 36%). Large enterprises prefer (or can still afford) to meet in-person.
  • Well over half of SME’s surveyed (56%) use Web conferencing to solve problems they could not solve before.
  • Online customer presentations and demonstrations are more important to SME’s than to large enterprises; SME’s hold many more Web conferences that involve customers.
Productivity is increased with web conferencing's ability to include more people (reach) and save travel costs and time. Benefits include the ability to reach more people, save travel costs & time, increase flexibility (meet from home, on the road, etc), and make meetings happen that would otherwise be impossible to schedule

Web conferencing has affected SME business practices is the following ways:

  • Almost 3/4 of SME’s use web conferencing to include participants who could not attend before (72%)
  • Over 2/3 use it to enable new meetings that could not be held previously (69%).
  • Almost 2/3 (64%) use web conferencing to replace in-person meetings.

SMEs use web conferencing for Customer Presentations, Demos, Traiing, Prospects, External Teams and for Support. Large corporations use web conferencing for in-house meetings more than for external sales/marketing meetings.

Customers are satisfied – over 2/3 of SME’s believe the technology delivers a high-to-very-high return in value. When given the opportunity, several SME’s stated that web conferencing has taken on such an important role in their organizations that they could no longer conduct business without it.

The top factors considered by SME participants in the Web conferencing survey when choosing a supplier of web conferencing technology are

Top Web Conferencing System Features

  • Overall ease of use
  • Reliability - ease of booking and starting
  • Screen performance and speed
  • Ease of managing the session: ie.Starting an ad hoc meeting
  • Information sharing features
  • Security (SSL, encryption, etc).

Overall ease of use and strong screen performance are top feature priorities.

Top Web Conferencing Purchasing Criteria

  • Ease of operation
  • Transparent to download
  • Reliability
  • Strong customer support
  • Offers low, flat pricing
  • Encryption & security

About Citrix Online

Citrix Online, a division of Citrix Systems, Inc., is a leading provider of easy-to-use, on-demand applications for Web conferencing and collaboration. Its award-winning services include GoToMeeting Corporate, a complete collaboration solution that satisfies all Web conferencing needs ranging from large Webinars to small online meetings. With GoToMeeting Corporate, organizations of any size can use GoToWebinar for do-it-yourself Web events and GoToMeeting for smaller, more interactive online meetings.

GoToMeeting Corporate allows users to easily present, demonstrate and provide training online to anyone, anywhere in the world. GoToMeeting Corporate can make businesses of any size more productive by reducing travel time and costs and enhancing communication, ultimately leading to faster decision making and more efficient workers. For a free evaluation of GoToMeeting Corporate, please visit www.gotomeeting.com



Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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