Business Tips


three women looking at image off screen in an office

Women continue to make strives in the business world despite the hardships of the last year and a half due to the pandemic.

There is data to back the fact that women did not let the challenges of a difficult year show them down. In fact, women rose to the occasion.

A Guidant Financial 2021 Small Business Trends report based on a survey of 2,400 business and franchise owners nationwide found that 32 percent of small business owners are women, a 13% increase from last year’s 27%.

A woman in an office female business owner with a laptop, older

The report indicates that we are older, highly educated and motivated.

More from the report:

  • Who are they? Over half of women business owners are Gen X (born between 1965 and 1980). Baby Boomers (1946 – 1964) account for 31% , while 17% are Millennials (1981 – 1996). Gen Z, born in or after 1997, makes up one percent of respondents.
  • They are also highly educated: the largest share at 34% holds a Bachelor’s degree, while 27% have a Master’s and 8% a Doctorate. 11% of respondents have an Associate’s degree and 20%  a high school diploma or GED.
  • Why they own  29% said they were ready to be their own boss. 20% desire to pursue their passion, followed by a dissatisfaction with corporate America and the presentation of an opportunity, each with 13%.
three women at table working on a business

Things are looking up for women-owned businesses in 2021: nearly half of women business owners plan to grow their current location, while a third will sustain it. 9%  plan to sell and 8% will open a second location. At the end of the day, a full 76% of women business owners report being somewhat or very happy, while just 14% report being very or somewhat unhappy. Despite all the challenges of 2020, women business owners have triumphed. 

graphic with stat data about women

And for the demographic of Black Businesses, the Guidant Financial trend data found that women make up forty six percent of Black entrepreneurs.

The report’s findings are based on the annual Small Business Trends survey conducted by the Small Business Trends Alliance (SBTA), a group of companies dedicated to supporting small business with data insights.

The SBTA teamed up to conduct a joint survey of over 2,400 current and aspiring small business owners across the nation.

Among black-owned businesses:

young woman with a camera
  • Women make up 46 percent of Black entrepreneurs, one of the highest percentages of female small business owners of any segment.
  • The plurality (33 percent) of surveyed Black small business owners had Bachelor’s degrees. The next most common level of education was Master’s degrees, at 26 percent.
  • 36 percent of Black entrepreneurs opened their business because they were ready to become their own boss. Twenty-four percent wanted to pursue their passion, 17 percent were inspired with a new business idea, and 17 percent were dissatisfied with corporate America.
  • The plurality (42 percent) of Black entrepreneurs are very happy as small business owners.
  • 43 percent of Black small business owners used cash alone or with another funding option to start their small business.
  • 59 percent of Black small businesses required $50,000 or less to start up.
  • 77 percent of Black entrepreneurs started their own new independent business as opposed to starting or buying a franchise location or buying an existing small business.
  • 54 percent of surveyed Black-owned small businesses were profitable.
  • 38 percent of Black small business owners said a lack of capital/cash flow was one of their biggest struggles in the last 12 months.
  • 55 percent of Black small business owners want to grow their business as opposed to sustaining, opening a new location, or selling.
  • 44 percent of Black-owned businesses have only two to five employees. 36 percent are solo ventures.
  • 24 percent of surveyed small businesses lost revenue due to COVID-19. 12 percent temporarily closed.
  • 53 percent of Black-owned small businesses did not receive financial aid via the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) or Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL).
  • 41 percent of Black small business owners strongly disliked the US government’s response to COVID-19.
  • On average, Black small business owners are neutral in their level of confidence about small business in the political climate.
  • 41 percent of surveyed Black small business owners said they didn’t belong to or feel represented by any US political party. 40 percent said Democrat, while 13 percent said Republican.
woman in office analyzing data on a tear sheet

These stats make me more encouraged that our demo is a force to be reckoned with and that we wholeheartedly deserve all the support, resources and programs out there to help women-owned businesses scale.

The Guidant report support my conclusions:

Things are looking up for women-owned businesses in 2021: nearly half of women business owners plan to grow their current location, while a third will sustain it. Nine percent plan to sell and eight percent will open a second location.

They also have big plans to invest. In a question where respondents could select as many options as applied to them, 83 percent said they plan to invest in digital and/or traditional marketing, 44 percent will expand or remodel their business, and 43 percent intend to increase their staff. Other common selections include investing in business services technology (21 percent) and technology for digital signage, touch-free ordering, etc. (14 percent).

At the end of the day, a full 76 percent of women business owners report being somewhat or very happy, while just 14 percent report being very or somewhat unhappy. Despite all the challenges of 2020, women business owners have triumphed.




graphic of two women sitting across one another in plush chairs with one taking notes in front of words report: women owned businesses thrived during the pandemic