IBM is top dog for SMEs

Analyst research shows that IBM is leading the race to sell hardware to small UK firms

Analysts have found that IBM is the top choice for SMEs on the hunt for computing systems, servers, desktops, laptops and management software.

According to a survey from analyst house Yankee Group, US small businesses say they prefer kit from Big Blue — despite IBM's exit from the PC market. The research company puts that down to innovation as well as some smart pricing on its Express products.

Dell remains the biggest box shifter, but comes second to IBM in terms of market leadership, said Yankee Group. It says the company wins points with SMEs for its user-friendly Web site, which they find educational.

Dell shares its second place with HP and both are followed by Sun in third position, which struggles despite its decent performance in the technical computing market.

To succeed in the small business sector, suppliers need to pull their socks up with both products and channel programmes, Yankee Group said.