The Latest Business Trends for 2017

If you want to get ahead of the trend in business, you need to be constantly ahead of the trends in life. Small businesses are appearing all the time, and those that are successful will have kept a keen eye on emerging trends and new technologies.

Now that we're in the New Year, it's the perfect time to brush up on what's new in business, both in terms of the latest technology and those emerging markets which are going to be big business in 2017.

The Opportunities

2017 will be all about living well. As part of this, small business owners may be able to harvest some opportunities from people's pastimes and lifestyles.

Hygge, for example, will be huge in 2017. Hygge, if you haven't heard of it, is a Danish trend which translates loosely as cosiness in English, and lends itself well to interior design. Google searches for Hygge were up 163 per cent in the last quarter of 2016, meaning that Hygge sets to be big in 2017.

Food and drink are often targeted by small business start-ups, and 2017 will see the rise of craft gin as the tipple of choice. In 2016, it saw a rise in Google searches on 2015 of 285 per cent. Craft beer was also popular - up 86 per cent on 2015 - and vegan diets are also popular at the moment, with an 83 percent rise in comparison to 2015. Entrepreneurs that therefore wish to break into the food and drink market should bear in mind these trends.

And, to throw in something entirely different, jive classes saw a 50 per cent increase in searches last year than in 2015. Perhaps this is something that health and fitness entrepreneurs should be aware of as the popularity of these classes increases?

The Technology

The Internet continues to be key for small businesses, giving them more control over their brand development, customer engagement and marketing. Their web presence, including reviews and testimonials, their website and social media will play an important part in a customer's decision to buy from them or not.

Online spending is on the rise in the UK, and therefore the presence of online storefronts is essential. Ecommerce draws web users to websites en masse, and incentives can be used such as free shipping over a certain amount to encourage customers to spend more.

Small businesses can also benefit this year from Business Intelligence (BI). This data has historically been used by large businesses only, but the growth of internet technology will make it more accessible to the small business this year. Data could include the likes of spending habits, or knowing what your customers are searching for, and BI software can help you draw your target audience in without having to do the research.

The People

Millennials are in their prime at the moment, with the oldest members of this generation entering their early 30s. The Millennial generation are able to adapt to new technologies immediately, and are key in spreading marketing information at great speed. Businesses should be aware of this audience and may also wish to incorporate members of the Millennial generation into their work teams.

Of course, one of the trends which continues to be strong in 2017 is outsourcing work to qualified professionals. Once such area where small businesses can benefit is through the help of local bookkeepers. Don't be afraid to outsource in 2017 if it allows you to concentrate on what you do best: running your business.

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