Forget the gloomy financial forecasts and words of warning from industry nose-tappers – the overriding tone from independent PC retailers is one of optimism for the future, according to this month's PC Retail reader survey.
When asked if they were confident of their business in the near future, 70 per cent of our survey answered yes, while only 13 per cent said no, with 17 per cent unsure.
The widespread confidence goes against the pervading pessimism many industry commentators and retailers have spouted in recent months, thanks to a combination of the credit crunch, continued expansion of supermarket's PC and technology divisions, continued price erosion by internet retailers and the news that electronics goliath Best Buy will be setting up shop in Europe next year.
Elsewhere in the survey, 76 per cent of independents said that service was their biggest profit earner, highlighting the growing trend of smaller retailers being forced to reduce or even scrap the hardware and software retailing aspect of their businesses due to massive undercutting from larger competitors.
The report also revealed a significant division between the retail community on the subject of Dell's entry into the channel, with 60 per cent of respondents claiming it is a bad thing, while 31 per cent were in favour of the move.