Also in the news this week - 10 February 2017

10 February 2017

New guide to help SMEs navigate Brexit

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) and the Chartered Institute of Credit Management (CICM) have published a new guide to help small businesses protect their cashflow as the UK leaves the EU. Managing cash through Brexit poses questions to help small businesses assess their current risk and exposure; it also provides tips for SMEs on managing cashflow during times of uncertainty.

Micro-businesses gloomier than bigger SMEs

Less than half (45%) of micro-business owners expect their company to grow over the next two years compared to 73% of larger SMEs, according to new data from Albion Ventures. The fourth Albion Growth Report has also found that 57% of SMEs expect to see an increase in productivity in the next 24 months compared to only 33% of micro-businesses. Patrick Reeve, managing partner at Albion Ventures, said: "Size really does matter and micro-businesses … appear far more concerned about their future growth prospects than their counterparts with more than five employees."

BT seeks innovative SMEs

BT has launched a competition to find innovative ideas from SMEs aimed at protecting the UK's infrastructure and keeping data secure. The BT SME Award 2017: Securing the Nation will give small firms the chance to showcase new technology and product ideas in three categories: cyber security; data collection, mining and analytics; and digital innovation. Entrants can find out more on the BT website; the closing date is 3 March.

Is website development missing the mark?

Businesses are focusing too much on how their websites look and neglecting functionality and conversion, says Digimax. Its survey of UK businesses has found that only 9% of time spent with a website designer is devoted to conversion. Meanwhile, 88% of the time spent planning a website is focused on design, content, layout and graphics - despite the fact that 98% of businesses say they build a website to make more money.