Marketing Channels, Marketing Planning & Reporting

The Best Awards for Small Businesses in Scotland


Entering awards is a great way to boost your small business. Regardless of whether you’re a finalist or a winner, it will generate publicity, give you an edge over competitors whilst also getting you recognition for your achievements. So let’s have a look at a few of the best awards for small businesses in Scotland!

FSB Celebrating Small Business Awards

FSB Celebrating Small Business Awards

Whether you’re a current member of the FSB (Federation of Small Businesses) or not, these awards are open to all small businesses and the self-employed. They celebrate achievements from local small businesses, their success, innovation and brilliance. There are area finals, e.g. finals for all small businesses from Scotland as well as UK finals.

This year’s Scotland awards have already taken place – so it’s time to get prepping for entering 2024! To find out more about the categories and application process, check out the FSB awards website.

Made in Scotland Awards

made in scotland awards small business

The Made in Scotland Awards celebrate innovative Scottish businesses and entrepreneurs across all fields. From Best New Product to Food & Drink Company of the Year, there are lots of different categories to enter. This year even saw the arrival of a new category, Manufacturing Apprentice of the Year. You can enter your small business for as many categories as you like, as long as it’s relevant.

Entries usually close in March, and the annual awards ceremony takes place in April or May. For more information, visit the Made in Scotland Awards website.

Find out more about how to win awards and give your small business a boost.

The Herald Diversity Awards

The Herald Diversity Awards celebrate Scottish companies working to create equitable and inclusive work environments. They look for companies with “inclusive recruitment practices, combating unconscious biases, fostering an inclusive culture that values and supports all employees, promoting gender equality and equal pay, and enhancing accessibility for individuals with disabilities”.

Nominations for the 2023 awards close at 6pm on 22nd August, with the awards ceremony itself taking place on October 12th. For more information, visit the Diversity Awards website.

To read about making your marketing more inclusive, check out this post next.

Business Women Scotland Awards


Another one of the awards for small businesses worth considering: Business Women Scotland’s Awards focus on recognising the achievements of the growing number of female-led businesses in Scotland. These awards are perfect for women who run their own small business, with lots of categories to choose from.

Entries for the 2023 awards are open until 8th September, and the awards ceremony will take place on 24th November. All the awards are free to enter, and entry forms can be downloaded from the website. For more information, visit the Business Women Scotland website.

Social Enterprise Awards Scotland

social enterprise

As a social enterprise, there aren’t that many awards for small businesses in Scotland. So make sure to check out the Social Enterprise Awards Scotland. These awards recognise innovation, impact and success in social enterprise businesses which are changing the world for the better.

Applications for the 2023 awards are now closed, but get planning and make sure your entry is perfect in time for the 2024 awards! The awards are free to enter and entries can be submitted online. For more information, visit the Social Enterprise Awards Scotland website.

Scottish Enterprise Awards


Not to be confused with the previous awards! The Scottish Enterprise Awards celebrate businesses of all sizes, from small local start-ups, all the way through to multi-national companies. These awards aim to raise Scotland’s profile as “a hub for innovation and entrepreneurship”.

Applications for the 2023 awards close on 15th September. But, if you need more time, don’t rush! Take your time planning to make sure you’re ready for the 2024 awards. Again, these awards are free to enter and entries can be submitted online. For more information, visit the Scottish Enterprise Awards website.

Local awards

Photo by MCCAIG via Canva Pro

As well as national awards for small businesses, it’s worth entering your small business in local awards too. Depending on where you’re based in Scotland, there are a variety of regional awards to choose from. These awards highlight the best businesses in the local area across a range of categories.

For example: Fife Business Awards, Lanarkshire Business Awards, Highlands & Islands Media Awards, Glasgow Business Awards, The Dundee Courier Business Awards

Niche awards

Photo by Jirsak via Canva Pro

Just like the local awards for small businesses, it’s well worth applying for more niche awards. This will give you the best chance of winning an award that’s really relevant to your small business. Look for awards for small businesses which are specific to your sector or the type of products or services you provide.

For example: The Scottish Thistle Awards for tourism, VIBES for environmentally-conscious businesses, the Scottish Home Awards, the Scotland Food & Drink Excellence Awards, and the Scottish Charity Awards


To read more about this topic, have a look at these:
How to Win Awards & Give Your Small Business a Boost
5 Top Tips to get Your Press Release noticed
7 Networking Events and Clubs to Join in Edinburgh
How to Add Perceived Value to Your Small Business

Denise Strohsahl brand and marketing consultant for small businesses

Hello, I’m Denise from sandstonecastles, a brand & marketing consultancy based in Edinburgh, Scotland.

I help small business owners like yourself to find the right marketing that’s in line with your brand and values.