San Diego: home of beaches, babes and web-savvy small businesses

When it comes to small businesses using social media and the web, San Diego, Austin and Phoenix lead all other U.S. cities

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When you think of San Diego, what comes to mind? Beautiful beaches, lots of sun and well-tanned bodies, right? Sure, but if you haven’t thought of San Diego as a place with lots of small businesses using the web, you may want to add that to your mental list.

At least, that what some new data from Radius Intelligence suggests. They collected more than 2 billion pieces of data about more than 21 million small businesses (i.e., those with less than 500 employees) in March of this year. They then ranked cities based on the number of small businesses with social media accounts and websites. San Diego came in first with a total “web-savvy” score of 69.7%. Next was Austin at 68.1% then Phoenix at 64.6%. The infographic to the right shows the top cities based on small business with Twitter accounts, Facebook accounts and web sites (click here for a large version).

I find these numbers a bit surprising. Only 3% of small businesses in Boston have a Twitter account? Less than half of small businesses in San Francisco have a website? Those numbers seem low. But, then again, if they’re really counting all small businesses, including places like my plumber, my daughters’ dance school and my mechanic, it makes more sense.

Of course, just because a business has a Twitter or Facebook account, or a website, doesn’t mean they’re “savvy” about how to use it. As my buddy Steve Garfield likes to point out, businesses will often fail to use social media effectively. The Radius data are a measure of social media and online presence, not how they use these tools. What those businesses do with that presence is a whole other matter.

Do you interact with local small businesses on social media or the web? Any particularly good or bad examples of small businesses using these tools? Do tell in the comments.

Read more of Phil Johnson's #Tech blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Phil on Twitter at @itwphiljohnson. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.

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