At the 2017 SMB Cloud Summit, GoDaddy’s SVP of Productivity, Irana Wasti, had an insightful conversation with Local Search Association’s VP of Strategy and Insights, Greg Sterling about the small business ecosystem. Specifically, they talked about the impact of mobile productivity applications on the SMB market and what GoDaddy is doing in this area.

GoDaddy continues to play a critical role when it comes to helping these businesses start, grow and efficiently run their independent ventures. It is widely known that there are about 28 million small businesses in the US and close to 420 million globally, but Wasti pointed out that the total addressable market of small businesses is actually quite a bit higher when you take into consideration the nascent businesses that are still too young to be classified as “small business” by conventional standards.

Globally, GoDaddy serves over 17 million nascent and small businesses alike, and has 73 million domain names under management, but GoDaddy’s customers rely on them in ways that extend far beyond naming their business, including building a professional website, attracting customers, and managing their day-to-day workloads.

If there is one thing GoDaddy customers have in common, it is that they are all incredibly passionate about their business.  And, with this passion comes long hours and lots of hard work, especially since more than 75% of small businesses in the US are sole-proprietorships, or one-person shops, that don’t have the assistance that a team of employees provides.

It’s for this reason that GoDaddy and other companies are democratizing the playing field and making it affordable (sometimes free) and easy to acquire the tools necessary to allow small businesses to focus on what matters to them the most…their business.  Some of these tools include professional email services, Microsoft Office integrations, online bookeeping tools and more.

That said, as more small business service providers enter the market, small businesses may be led astray by simultaneously working with too many service providers, resulting in diminishing returns as their data becomes siloed and operations become less efficient.

In an effort to consolidate the plethora of tools available to small businesses, GoDaddy is continuously looking for ways to expand on their already impressive portfolio of products. But, as GoDaddy’s product portfolio grows, so does their challenge to optimize the end-to-end experience for their customers by recommending the appropriate products to a business depending on where it is in its lifecycle.

One way GoDaddy is solving for this problem is by leveraging their award-winning customer care organization of over 5,000 employees that are focused on intimately connecting with GoDaddy’s customers around the world, 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.  Collectively, GoDaddy’s Customer Care organization handles about 1.4 million customer interactions per month, and drove 24% of GoDaddy’s 2016 bookings.

Small business will continue to play a vital role in the global economy, and GoDaddy recognizes that they have a huge responsibility to ensure that these independent ventures have the tools they need to succeed.  GoDaddy has made great strides in the right direction, but there is still plenty of work to be done, and GoDaddy is excited for what the future holds.