MYOB's regular survey of SMEs has found that while the number of businesses with a web site has risen slightly from 36% in March to 38% in June, other types of online business activity has declined.
In particular, social media activity has declined from 18% to 15% for Facebook, YouTube and Google+, and from 19% to 13% for LinkedIn.
"The decline in popularity of online business activities was completely unexpected, particularly that of online marketing and social media," said MYOB CEO Tim Reed.
He suggested that this decline could be the result of operators that are experiencing declining revenues (which outnumber those seeing rising revenue) focusing on other aspects of their businesses.
The highest incidence of SMEs with web sites is in Queensland (47%) compared with 27% in Western Australia, whereas social media usage is highest in Victoria (19%) and lowest in New South Wales (12%)
Curiously, online business activities such as placing orders, paying bills, accepting payments, using Skype or other VoIP services also fell between the two surveys.
More than 1000 SME operators were surveyed for the Business Monitor.