The number of new businesses starting up in the UK has grown by 19%, according to direct marketing company Selectabase. Its latest study shows that from January to May this year, 36,179 new enterprises were launched equating to approximately 240 start ups per day. Compared with the same period in 2009 that means nearly 6,000 more businesses were started in the first quarter of this year.

With the economy in difficult times, new start-ups might be surprising to some but the internet has made it easier for people to create a start-up and run it either as a replacement to their main job or, more frequently, alongside as a way of topping up their income.

Selectabase’s data revealed 1265 different types of businesses were started, with the most popular being electricians, plumbers, hairdressers and builders as people turn to traditional trades. When you consider the figures also showed over 40% of these start ups were home-based businesses it is clear that at the moment many are just small-scale operations feeling their way into new markets.

Perhaps any electricians, plumbers, hairdressers and builders might feel a little concerned by the increased competition but from a business perspective, whatever your sector, you should be considering the growing number of start-ups as a potential avenue for increased revenue in your own business.

If the product / service that you offer has a potential business to business appeal then just think of all those extra potential clients out there. With many home-based, they may have limited time and are likely to be looking for quick solutions to promoting their own businesses. It might be worth keeping an eye out for new names and doing a bit of networking, to pick up potential new business.

It is not just new business that these new start-ups bring either. Even those in the same trade come with slightly different ideas, slightly different ways of doing things and different styles. There might be a chance for you to pick up tips to help your own business or perhaps even collaborate with one of them, more inspiring than the stale competition that had been hanging around before.

Of course, many of these start-ups might sadly fall by the wayside in tough economic times, but they will usually be the inward thinkers, those stuck in their ways and those fearful of competition. Those threats are just as real however long you have been in business, so could affect you just as badly if you fail to embrace the opportunities before you.