70% of SMEs optimistic about 2012

Small business owners in the UK are feeling optimistic about the prospects in 2012, according to a recent survey conducted by the global credit information company Experian.  Responding to questions about their outlook and plans for the coming months, a rather surprising majority (about 70%) of the 133 businesses responding said that they expected their business to change and grow to some extent.

Other statistics of interest from the survey indicated that nearly a fourth of small businesses expected to be borrowing money next year, with the majority looking for some flexible form of financing, such as a business overdraft or company credit card.  Only about 8% of the business owners polled who had applied for credit reported that they were unable to obtain it.

Over half of the 70% majority who expected to see a change for the better next year said that improvement would probably come from increased UK sales, with only about 12% expecting a rise in international sales.  However, over a quarter of them did anticipate an expansion into new territory or in the products they provide.

The key here seems to be adaptability; small businesses have seen a lot of challenges in the last few years, but more and more of them are diversifying, specializing or otherwise making changes to keep up with changing demands and reduced spending by consumers.  Those who are willing to steer a slightly different course than in previous years have more flexibility and therefore more avenues to explore in the search for profitability and success.

A separate poll, undertaken by T-Mobile earlier this year, revealed many of the same or very similar statistics.  That survey involved 2,019  SME’s, and the overall impression was that UK business men and women are, on the whole, tenacious and adaptable.  Those qualities will serve them well in tough times and hopefully into a profitable future.