Record numbers are expected to register their new business ideas this month as Britain’s entrepreneurs continue to make building a business their New Year’s resolution.
Data from 123 Reg shows a spike in the number of websites registered in in January each year. In fact, based on the past five years activity, British entrepreneurs are up to 10 per cent more likely to start a business in January than any other month throughout the year.
In particular, entrepreneurs seem to capitalise on the New Year spirit in the first week of the New Year, with the number of new registrations during this week growing by 20 per cent year on year.
New year new business
If this trend continues, around 10,000 new year business websites will be registered in the first week of the new year – the highest number ever.
‘Every year we see excitement about starting new businesses in January. Talking to our customers, we know that many use the holiday break from corporate life to think of exciting new business ideas and fulfil their dreams of starting out on their own,’ says Nick Leech, digital director at 123 Reg.
‘This is especially true at times of economic uncertainty when people start new businesses either as a side project in case of a downturn at work or as a necessity to cover gaps in employment. For example after the 2008 downturn – the UK saw more than 40,000 more domains registered by British entrepreneurs during January 2009 than January 2005’.
Entrepreneurs find motivation at the start of the year
One entrepreneur who has grown her New Year’s resolution into a successful business is Catherine Piddington, a luxury artisan jam producer and founder of Piddington Jam.
‘Starting my own business was a lifestyle choice – I knew what I wanted and the best way for me to get to that point was to be my own boss and take control of my future,’ explains Piddington.
‘Starting on a new business path at the start of the year gave me motivation, but also gave me the year to develop my brand and build my product line.
Piddington adds, ‘The first thing I did was to build an online presence – I knew this would lend the company an element of legitimacy, reassure the customer, and allow us to widen our reach, to globally entice and captivate people with the world we were creating. It also happened to be how Selfridges found us – had we not been online we would not have been invited to pitch.’
As with any New Year resolution, the challenge for these budding entrepreneurs is to ensure their business dream outlasts the first month of the year.
‘Entrepreneurs need all the support they can get when they start their new business,’ says Leech. ‘They are time-poor and resource light, juggling multiple hats on a daily basis. To fulfil their potential they need to be as well prepared as they can be.
‘We know that getting help and support from peers is equally important for entrepreneurs as the advice they get from experts. This is why our Digital Skills Assessment tool and Online Business Training platform not only provides bespoke recommendations on how businesses can improve their online potential, but also shares insight from others within their profession on how they have used digital to help them grow.’
Another example of such a successful business starting out in the month of January is Shepper, an on-demand visual inspection service.
Ben Prouty, CEO, says, ‘I’d always wanted to start my own business from scratch and I knew that by starting in January it would give the company a clear run and an opportunity to build momentum. The biggest challenge in the first month was to quickly identify our target customers and figure out how to find them. There really was no option but to be online as the core to our business is the ability to connect people.
‘Online tools to manage customer payments and keep an eye on the accounting side of the business has been integral to our success, and now having done a lot of the groundwork our focus for this year is international expansion.’