Results of a new survey conducted by Constant Contact®, Inc. reveal that, just like many people, business also make their own New Year’s resolutions. In fact, not only do small businesses make resolutions, many keep to their resolutions, as well.

The survey revealed that, of the small businesses surveyed, 53 percent make resolutions every year; about 23 percent make new resolutions every few years. Of those small businesses making New Year’s resolutions, about one-third—or 33 percent—report that they successfully keep to their resolutions. About 65 percent report that, while not successful 100 percent of the time, they are sometimes successful in keeping their New Year’s resolutions.

Interestingly, more than half of the respondents—53 percent—say that keeping their business resolutions is easier for them than keeping their personally set New Year’s resolutions. About 27 percent say it is easier for them to keep their personal resolutions than it is for them to keep business-based resolutions.

“I think most of us can relate to the treadmill gathering dust in the basement, or the long-abandoned pledge to stop procrastinating, so it’s easy to see why the majority of people surveyed think business-related New Year’s resolutions are easier to keep than personal ones,” said Christopher M. Litster, senior vice president of sales and marketing at Constant Contact.

Resolutions being set by small businesses include issues surrounding finances, efficiency, customers, and planning. The key concern to small businesses is, not surprisingly,  financial growth, followed by efficiency. Some businesses provided specific details on their 2014 New Year’s resolutions. For instance, regarding efficiency and finances, business responded:

  • “Run more efficiently. Need to keep costs under better control. Having a better plan/budget in place should help with expenses.”
  • “Put more resources into the most profitable projects”

Respondents reveal a strong desire to grow their businesses in ways that are more efficient, more forward thinking, and more focused on the customer:

  • 26 Percent: Increase annual revenue
  • 18 Percent: Run business more efficiently
  • 16 Percent: Increase client base
  • 10 Percent: Improve planning process
  • 10 Percent: Utilize different marketing tactics, including mobile marketing
  • 8 Percent:  Create an improved customer experience

Most of the comments made concerned the ways in which businesses sought to improve customer relations and increase their customer outreach and customer base. Here’s what some of them had to say:

  • “To expose my business to potential clients that don’t know what services I offer”
  • “Contact customers more often”
  • “Increase the number of in-store and out-of-store educational seminars to better engage our customer base.”
  • “Be better at teaching my staff how to provide exceptional customer service, while offering irresistible bargains”
  • “To increase social media presence on all levels by 15%”

Businesses spoke in terms of very targeted goals, including to keep previously successful resolutions, such as “Blog more frequently,” “Create a marketing plan,” and “Ask for more help.” Litster noted that, “Business resolutions can be easier to measure, as can the rewards if you stick to them, so I think staying focused on them can feel a bit easier.”

For the study, in November 2013, Constant Contact surveyed 1,305 small business owners who are also customers of the online small business marketing company.


Fox Small Business; Small Business Resolve to Grow Bigger, Get Faster in 2014; by Gabrielle Karol; January 06, 2014.

Business Wire; More than Half of Small Businesses Make New Year’s Resolutions to Better their Business According to New Constant Contact Survey; January 6, 2014.