Happy National Small Business Week! If you weren’t aware, 2018 marks the 55th annual National Small Business Week, heralded by the US Small Business Administration. The Small Business Administration, otherwise known as the SBA, helps inform small business owners about the resources that are available to them.
Many laud small businesses as the “backbone of the American economy” and they aren’t wrong to do so: there are more than 27 million small businesses in America and together they produce more than 50 percent of America’s gross domestic product. “If they produce so much for our economy, why do we need to support them?” Good question! Here’s why:
Small Businesses Create More Jobs
Statistically, there’s about a 50% chance that you’re working for a small business right now. The SBA considers any business a small one when they have fewer than 500 employees, so the number of businesses that meet those criteria is large. However, the SBA cites a report done between 1993 and 2011 that shows that 64% of the new jobs created in that period were from small businesses.
This is due to the expanding phase of any new or startup business – the company needs more workers to get the work done. For any one particular small business, this phase will eventually end and no longer create new jobs, but new businesses will replace the ones that stop creating new positions.
Small Businesses Provide Innovation
The booming tech industry is a testament to the success of innovation. Americans know that if their ideas aren’t being pursued properly by their bosses, they can take their skills, experience, and creativity into their own hands and start their own company. How does this benefit you, though?
Innovation brings the consumer new products and ways of doing things, helping speed progress along. Innovations like rideshare programs, fitness apps, personal computers, and 2-day free shipping delivery have transformed the lives of many in the last 20 years. None of those things would have been possible without the entrepreneurial spirit of the small business owner.
Small Businesses Support Your Local Community
If you’ve ever balked at giving your money to a large corporation, small businesses are the way to go. Spending your money with a small business often will keep the money within your community. Small, local business owners are more likely to form partnerships with other local businesses, join the rotary club, sponsor the local soccer team and the school districts, and will make a point to give back to the community – after all, they likely live there too.
Small Businesses Provide Product Diversity and Larger Inventories
Because a small business isn’t beholden to corporate’s deals with distributors, it’s more likely that they’ll carry more than just two brands of a particular product. That helps keep monopolies from taking over the market and helps you ensure that you have the option to choose from a selection of great products.
Additionally, many small businesses will carry a larger inventory of product than their corporate counterpart. This is due to several factors: they aren’t held to the standards of the rigorous corporate inventory system, and they may be more willing to order more and keep it on the shelves for longer. If they’re out, they’re more likely to help you get the product you need more quickly and efficiently than a corporate store.