May 3, 2021 (Fort Lauderdale, FL) – Just in time for National Small Business Week, The Small Business Expo, America’s largest business networking and educational event for business owners, start-ups, and entrepreneurs, has released its 2021 State of Small Business Report.
According to Zachary Lezberg, CEO and Founder, Small Business Expo, “There are 30.2 million small businesses in the US according to the Small Business Administration. This means 99.9% of all businesses are, in fact, small businesses. Yet the struggles, concerns, and issues facing small business in America are rarely talked about. With access to over a million small business owners, we wanted to take a pulse of how they are feeling post COVID, determine their outlook on the future, and other key factors which impact doing business circa 2021.”
Through our biannual survey implemented by the Small Business Expo, small business owners weighed in on everything from governmental regulation of small business to their opinions on the minimum wage increase, employee diversity, and work from home policies going forward.
When talking post-COVID recovery, it was interesting to note 19% of respondents have already seen their business return to pre-COVID revenue, while 5% said they never see their business recapturing where they were before the pandemic struck. A full 68%, however, have an optimistic outlook for business over the next 12 months. In terms of ranking motivators for being a small business owner, 36% of our audience placed the most importance on being their own boss, 27% do it for the money, 28% have a passion for what they are doing; and 25% do it in order to do good for the community.
Some of the key findings of the report include:
- Employee Diversity: 8 in 10 respondents say employee diversity is important to them in their business.
- Government Regulation: 47% or nearly half of all respondents feel there is too much government regulation of small business.
- Minimum Wage Increase: 32% Strongly Agree, 28% Agree, 12% Disagree and 14% Strongly Disagree with the proposed Federal Minimum Wage increase to $15 per hour; while 7 in 10 respondents said the minimum wage increase, if passed, would not impact their future hiring plans.
- COVID Business Startups: 25% of respondents started their business during COVID.
- COVID Impact: 66% of respondents indicated COVID negatively impacted their business, 21% said it had no impact, and 13% actually experienced a positive impact.
- Post-COVID Recovery: 19% of respondents have already returned to pre-COVID revenue; 18% predict it will take from 3 to 6 months while another 18% said it will take 10 to 12 months to recover, while 5% said they never will recover.
- Work From Home Policies: 3 in 10 respondents said they plan to keep their employees working from home post COVID, 1 in 10 will have a full return to the office, and 6 in 10 respondents said the Work From Home policy didn’t apply to their business.
- Advertising Mediums Of Choice: Facebook is the #1 advertising medium for small business owners favored by 21% of respondents. 19% of small business owners don’t advertise at all, while 10% prefer Instagram, 9% use Google, and 7% still prefer to exhibit at trade shows.
- Selling to Small Business Owners: For companies who want to sell to small business owners, 7 out of 10 respondents prefer to be contacted by email, 10% prefer direct mail, 9% prefer phone solicitation, and 8% prefer social media (LinkedIn).
- Hiring Plans: Over the next 12 months, 42% of small business owners surveyed plan 1-2 new hires; and 43% do not plan to hire at all.
- Debt Accrual: In the last 12 months, 33% of respondents have had no increase in debt; 19% have accrued between $1,001 and $5,000 in debt; 7% have accrued between $50,001 and $100,000 in debt, and just 2% have more than $100,000 in debt.
- Biggest Stressor: As a small business owner, 31% said their biggest source of stress is finding new customers; 24% reported cash flow issues; 19% listed keeping up with everything; and 7% said making payroll.
The 2021 State Of Small Business Report can be downloaded here: http://thesmallbusinessexpo.com/State-Of-Small-Business-May-2021.pdf
To learn more about Small Business Expo, visit TheSmallBusinessExpo.com.
About Small Business Expo
Founded in 2008, SBE is America's biggest business-to-business trade show, conference and networking event which targets companies with under 500 employees. SBE helps small business owners and other entrepreneurs take their businesses and ideas to the next level, offering quality free content and providing a thriving venue for some of the most exciting business theories and innovations. Learn more at: www.TheSmallBusinessExpo.com.