Despite concerns about the economy, UK small business owners are anticipating a positive year, according to the 2024 annual survey conducted by Atom Content Marketing, publishers of the Donut websites.

The survey reveals an optimistic mood among business owners, with two-thirds (66%) expecting better performance in 2024 compared to the previous year. Only 7% anticipate a decline, while 10% foresee stability in their business fortunes.

Growth emerges as a primary ambition for many SMEs, with 53% planning to increase spending on marketing initiatives this year. Additionally, 32% of respondents intend to venture into new business endeavours, underscoring a proactive approach towards expansion.

Confidence Amid Economic Concerns

Interestingly, while optimism prevails regarding their own businesses, confidence in the UK economy remains subdued. Only 24% of respondents anticipate economic improvement, with concerns about rising prices and economic stability at the forefront.

Marketing emerges as a central focus for small businesses, with social media posts, email marketing, and online advertising among the top strategies planned for 2024. Despite this, challenges persist, with issues such as website traffic, client acquisition, and financial management still prevalent. Respondents highlight several advantages of working for themselves, including autonomy, creativity, and flexibility in project selection and time management.

Commenting on the findings, Rory MccGwire, founder of Atom Content Marketing, said, “These findings are enormously encouraging. They demonstrate that the UK’s growing community of small businesses, sole traders and freelancers are optimistic, ambitious and resilient despite the on-going cost of living crisis. Business growth is clearly a key focus for UK small firms. Our aim with the Donut websites is to provide all the information and resources that small businesses need to turn their ambitions into reality.”

Lisa Williams, managing director of Atom Content Marketing, underscores the rewards of entrepreneurship, emphasising the potential for financial success and personal fulfilment that comes with running one’s own business.

The survey findings reflect a buoyant spirit within the UK small business community, underlining the determination to navigate through economic uncertainties and pursue growth opportunities in 2024.