The historic city of Oxford has been crowned the best place for budding entrepreneurs to start a business in the UK. The .UK Domain’s1 national analysis of demand for local services versus supply reveals the cities where consumer demand, from grocery stores to hairdressers, is not being met.
The analysis, of over 154,000 Google search terms and 63,000 national business listings, covers 59 of the UK’s biggest cities and identifies where the opportunities are for new business owners to harness online interest in their trade2.
While Oxford tops the list, untapped potential exists all over the country. For example, The .UK Domain reveals Cambridge residents are crying out for more cafes, but in Aberdeen locals are desperate to lift dumbbells with personal trainers. See the Top 10 places to set up each type of business.
The .UK Domain has created a map which highlights the gap in the market for ten different industries. The map, which shows services, has been developed to help green gardeners or keen cleaners, pick the best location for their new business.
With the majority of us in the UK – four out of five – using search engines to find local services and information, a website is a must-have to take advantage of the ‘Research Online, Buy Offline’ (ROBO) trend.3
Eleanor Bradley, Chief Operating Officer of Nominet, which runs The .UK Domain said: “Setting up a new business can be daunting but giving consumers what they want, where they want it is the key to success. But having a great idea and being in the right place at the right time is just one part of the story – businesses need a great shop window, on and offline, to grow. With millions searching the web for local services before hitting the streets, the lack of an online presence is the same as turning business away.”
Jack Drewe is an Oxford based landscape gardener. He set the business up in 2012 and straight away Jack decided to set up a website with testimonials, some examples of his work and a contact page. His business grew significantly as a result of the inbound requests coming through the website and now J.Drewe has grown to a team of 10 and serves a much wider area of Oxfordshire than before. Jack’s business grew 75% as a result of setting up online.
For more details and/or case studies contact Tom Broughton or Seb Holland on 02079245656 or via [email protected]
1 Demand defined by the number of Google searches in each of the 59 cities for 10 different trades. Supply data sourced from Yell.com. Population data sourced from Office of National Statistics. Ranking formula used: (online searches / population) divided by the number of current businesses in that area.
2 Largest defined as ‘biggest populations’ – for this survey we restricted our analysis to towns and cities with a population of greater than 20,000.
3 Google data ‘Understanding Consumers’ Local Search Behaviour’