"And so this is Christmas… What have we done?"

By: Mark Williams

Date: 23 December 2010

Christmas crackerIt's been a fabulous second year for the Donut. We've been steadily building things and now, each month, tens of thousands of UK businesses visit our websites for advice, free resources and offers. So what have been our other key achievements?

In August, following 12 months' development, we launched the Tech Donut, which has since become a popular destination for small firms in need of advice on a range of hardware and software issues. We were delighted to welcome Microsoft and Sage onboard as founding sponsors (a big thank you to all our other sponsors, while we're at it). Amazingly, the Tech Donut blog beat off stiff opposition to be named Computer Weekly's small company IT blog of the year – a superb achievement by any standards.

Crucially, we've created almost 100 syndicated versions of Donut websites for Enterprise Agencies, Chambers of Commerce and law firms across the UK. We're extremely proud of this fact. We welcome the involvement of all of our syndicator partners and look forward to welcoming many more next year.

Our Donut writers and editors have been very busy. This year they've produced more than 400 stories on a range of issues that matter to small firms new and more established.

We've also produced 12 editions of our information and offer-packed e-newsletter MyDonut, which is distributed to tens of thousands of registered site users each month. We've got big plans to make MyDonut even better in 2011, so sign up if you haven't already (don't worry, there's no charge), and keep an eye on your inbox…

None of the Donut sites would be possible without the involvement of our small business experts – a network that has grown to almost 250 leading professionals across our four Donut sites.

We've also built our combined Donut Twitter following to almost 24,000 followers – 5,250 on the Start Up Donut Twitter page alone.

And as well as interviewing some of the biggest names in UK enterprise – more importantly – we've shared the highs, lows, views and comments of hundreds of small-business owners.

We're proud of our successes this year, but it wouldn't have been possible without the enthusiastic support of you, the reader. We truly appreciate your input on our forums and the kind comments and messages of support you've sent us throughout the year.

What does 2011 hold? Well, you can expect fresh Donuts - and an even stronger local flavour. And, of course, we'll continue to champion the cause of small-business owners. Watch this space.

Have a great Christmas and New Year. We'll be back on 4 January. All the very best…