The end of every year is the opportunity to reflect on a 365-day journey. 2021 may have been a bad year for some people especially due to COVID-19 pandemic while, to others, it was a great year. Many businesses were launched and others were closed. Pivots were made and goals were shattered.
In the last few days of 2021, we took some time to ask a few entrepreneurs and businesses what their biggest business accomplishments were.
#1. Officially recognized as the biggest platform for innovation and digitalization in the European Union
"Actually something big happened to us in 2021. We were officially recognized as the biggest platform for innovation and digitalization in the European Union, which was a major stepping stone towards our goal to build an ecosystem for entrepreneurs to tackle topics of the future."
Thanks to Benjamin Talin, Founder, MoreThanDigital.info
#2. We tackled the pandemic with resilience
"The pandemic wreaked havoc for organizations, with its unpredictability and restrictions. As a company we had to be agile and responsive, this was particularly challenging for us as a small company. However, my team and I stood strong in the face of all the issues that came up. I believe we handled Covid'19 with utmost patience and endurance, which is why as the dust settles now, we find ourselves in a stable and profitable position."
Thanks to Isla Sibanda, PrivacyAustralia.
#3. Getting more than 1,000 visitors to my blog
"As a blogger and writer, I can say that I have come a long way in the last few years. The most important thing I did in 2021 was getting more than 1000 visitors to my blog. I've had the blog for the past years and had a hard time getting people to visit. So I hired a blogging coach in June 2021, and she has helped me a lot with my business. Within the first month that I worked with her, I had more than 2,000 people visit my blog. My goal is to have more people visit my blog."
Thanks to Teo Vanyo, CEO, Stealth Agents.
#4. Surviving the Pandemic
"The fact that we were able to survive the pandemic, expand, and retain quality is something I am most proud of. During the pandemic, we were not compelled to lay off anyone and in fact, increased the number of employees on our payroll. This was not an easy task, but we were confident in our process, and it was successful. Finally, we were able to maintain a high level of consistency in the quality of our services. Overall, the year 2021 was a successful one for PureTuber."
Thanks to Rameez Usmani, CMO, Puretuber.
#5. Doubling the size of my workforce and increasing the capacity of my business
"While most businesses faced unprecedented hardship during 2021, another year that seemingly never was, my biggest professional achievement was doubling the size of my workforce and increasing the capacity of my business, which is still being tested to its absolute limit. Being able to do that during a period of corporate and company uncertainty, is one of the proudest achievements of my career."
Thanks to John Dibella, CEO, NetLocal.
#6. The launch of our instant and automatic bank account verification service
Our biggest achievement in 2021 was the launch of our instant and automatic bank account verification service. Our technology team spent thousands of development hours to connect our platform to more than 10,000 banks globally, so we can now verify bank accounts in seconds. The old process took days and sometimes even weeks.
Thanks to Alex Armitage, CEO, Nectarine Credit.
#7. Pulling through the pandemic
"We almost went out of business due to Covid and we hung in there, pivoted, rebranded, found a new facility to manufacture and we got back in the game. Because of all of this I was able to become a contestant on USA Network’s Premier Season of Joy Mangano’s America’s Big Deal. My episode aired on November 4, 2021, and I made a major connection with one of the largest coffee and foodservice companies in the US who is now looking to bring Javamelts into their company and network! I’d love to share my story further to help motivate, inspire and encourage others!"
Thanks to Alex Thompson, Festoon House.
#8. Revenue Growth
"As an entrepreneur, you have the opportunity to use your time and abilities to create the life of your dreams. Since then, I've accomplished a number of things that have helped me achieve that goal. I was able to more than double my revenue this year compared to last year. In addition, I've worked with real estate clients to assist them 10x their revenue through the photography of Real Estate. As a result of the growth of my company, I've been able to take on more significant campaigns with reputable organizations."
#9. We built a great team
"Starting a startup is easy, executing it is hard, growing it is harder. 2021 was a very successful year for Decktopus. As the CEO of Decktopus, I am very proud of this success. We built a great team, with this team you can achieve anything. Also, we enhanced our product and expanded our reach: Now you can prepare proposals, presentations, and documents with Decktopus. Once you have a great team, a great product, and great market demand, then you are unstoppable."
Thanks to Noyan IDIN, CEO of Decktopus.
#10. We raised and closed another round of funding
"We partnered with a franchisor in 2021 that has 150 locations. We will continue the growth with this group, but if we close the majority of these franchisees, which we are already on a great path to do so, this will more than double our current customer base.
We have also launched weekly virtual help sessions to allow our users to get additional support during their time with us as a customer. We provide value outside our product so we can be a marketing and sales tech partner in the home services vertical. We also raised and closed another round of funding this year, hired our first official customer success hire, and have an all remote workforce."
Thanks to Nicki Laycoax, Groundwork Customer Succes; Eddy Van Der Mask, Product Owner, Zeply.
#11. Adopting a Vertical Growth Model for Our SaaS
“Throughout the past year, we’ve really focused on a vertical SaaS strategy. In the past with our company, we focused on a horizontal strategy in which we tried to cover multiple fields and areas. We saw that though we covered a lot of ground, we weren’t exactly focused on actually the quality of growth. With a vertical SaaS strategy, we were able to focus on a few areas to really help our company grow. We saw this especially in our marketing, where we were able to easily identify what our customers liked and didn't like, allowing us to adapt our services from there. Adapting a vertical SaaS model has helped us achieve more sales and greater satisfaction, proving that it’s something that we will continue to implement in the coming year.”
Thanks to Rich Rudzinski, Tragic Media.
#12. We onboarded successfully
"In 2021, we focused a lot on onboarding. We tore apart our application and put it back together in order to effectively deliver the first value to our users. If they don’t get that value then they won’t turn into long-term paying customers.
Sure, you can use dark patterns to get a month or two of revenue out of them. But is that worth it if you’ve lost a customer that is usually worth 18 months of revenue. A fringe benefit was less churn because of better activation."
Thanks to Daniel Ndukwu, CoFounder of UsefulPDF.
#13. We launched our new editor for our proposal software
"One of the biggest achievements in 2021 for me was our launch of the new editor for our proposal software. It’s basically a super intuitive interface for creating business proposals that anyone can use. Instead of a complex builder/editor, we launched one where you can add your own custom blocks and edit everything from the fonts to the logos and images and even tinker with the HTML code. A lot of our customers have been asking about this for a while now and it’s made a major difference in product adoption and customer retention. Since we have a lot of designers and developers as our customers, the new editor made them super happy as they can now fully customize their business proposals to reflect their business’ identity."
Thanks to Adam Hempenstall, CEO and Founder of Better Proposals.