The top 10 most asked Qs about small business this year

Seattle District Office  -  Dec. 18, 2019

u s small business administration
U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy Regulation Research Outreach

The Top 10 Most Frequently Asked Questions

As this year comes to a close, we reflect back upon not only the past 12 months but the end of a decade. In this week's newsletter, we review the current economic climate that makes today one of the best times ever to start a new business. 

Each year the SBA Office of Advocacy compiles a list of the most frequently asked questions and answers about small business. The following are the top 10 for this year:

  1. What is a small business? The Office of Advocacy defines a small business as an independent business with less than 500 employees. Size standards for government certifications are defined differently for each industry, see the SBA size standards table.
  2. How many small businesses are there in the U.S.? By the most recent count, there were 30.7 million small businesses.
  3. What is the role of small businesses in the economy? They comprise 99.9% of all firms and 99.7% of all firms with paid employees.
  4. What percent of net new jobs do small businesses create? From 2000 to 2018, small businesses created 9.6 million net new jobs while large businesses created 5.2 million.
  5. How can small businesses generate two-thirds of net new jobs, but their share of employment is less than 50%? As firms grow, they change employment size classes, if they pass the 500-employee mark, their employment gains are classified as large firm employment.
  6. What is the new business survival rate? Four out of five establishments that started in 2017 survived until 2018 (79.4%). 
  7. How many small businesses open and close each year? In 2016, there were about 433,000 startups and 400,000 firm closures. The share of businesses that were startups has hovered around 8% since 2010. 
  8. How many businesses do minorities own? At he last count in 2012, 8 million businesses were minority-owned, or 29.3% of U.S. firms. 
  9. How many businesses do veterans own? In 2012, veterans owned 2.5 million businesses, or 9.3% of U.S. firms. 
  10. How many businesses do women own? In 2012, there were 9.9 million women-owned firms, and 2.5 million firms owned equally by men and women. This means that 12.3 million firms, or 45% of all classifiable firms, were at least 50% women-owned. 

Read the next 10 most commonly asked questions and answers at the SBA Office of Advocacy:

See the next 10


    The deadline has been extended to Jan. 7, apply today →

    National Small Business Week Submit Your Nomination SBA

    Find business events near you...

    Search