The top lessons for small business from 2022

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The year 2022 has been a period of contrasting experiences for Australian small businesses, from optimism – with the end of the global pandemic in sight – to global economic uncertainty and challenging trading times ahead.

All through the ups and downs, thousands of Australian entrepreneurs have followed their passions into building small businesses, and many through hard work and perseverance have defied the worst of the year’s challenges to prosper.

Change has again been a constant for small-business owners in 2022 and, as the end of the year approaches, we’ve looked back at some top learnings for small business over the last 12 months.

Importance of making your business cyber safe

No matter whether you are a small business or a multinational, cybercriminals are a constant threat, with self-reported losses from cybercrime in Australia at $33 billion a year.

Taking steps to protect your business from the most common risks doesn’t require an IT degree and a great place to start is the Australian Government’s Cyber Security Centre’s step-by-step guide for small businesses.

Online retail is powering more small businesses than ever

Online retail became a source of intense focus for Aussie entrepreneurs this year, with GoDaddy research in January finding having an online store is now responsible for over half of a small business’s annual revenue.

Almost two-thirds of small-business owners said that having an online store with their website was either more or much more important than having a bricks-and-mortar store.

There’s a payment revolution underway

The pandemic killed off cash payments and it’s not only card payments that have increased, but the use of digital wallets, too.

Having a digital wallet option for your online store might come in handy with the Reserve Bank of Australia saying the share of mobile wallet transactions was 25 per cent in the March 2022 quarter, more than double the previous year.

It’s important to build customer loyalty

It has been a tough season for many small businesses with supply chain challenges, staffing shortages and many increasing costs underlining the importance of building customer loyalty.

Strategies to help build customer loyalty could include fostering a personal connection with customers over social channels, offering a gift with purchase and showcasing customer testimonials online.

Why you need to do an annual website review

With the rise in online retail, your website shouldn’t be a set-and-forget tool in your sales and marketing arsenal.

An annual website review is important to make sure your site is operating at its best.

This can include a basic check of contact information, products and social channel links or a deeper dive into whether the style and substance of the site remain relevant.

The value of trusting your instincts

Small-business owners are the equivalent of their own CEO, so one of the most important skills that emerged this year was the ability to trust your instincts.

GoDaddy also undertook research with 1000 Aussie entrepreneurs which found three quarters believed that trusting their instincts has positively impacted their business and 68 per cent trust their instincts to make business decisions “most days”.

The power of a hyper-local domain name

A new era of Australian domain names kicked off this year with the introduction of the “.au” domain name extension for Aussies.

While shorter domain names are great for branding and mobile browsing, cyber experts warned Aussie businesses with an online presence to snap up their “.au” equivalent to avoid it falling into the hands of scammers or competitors.

As the year comes to a close, the GoDaddy team wishes you and your small-business team a safe and happy holiday season and all the best for another year of going for it and following your passions in 2023.