10 Startup & Small Business Statistics to Be Hopeful About


During presentations and conversations, popular statistics can help you illustrate your point. In the startup world, one of the most often cited is that 90% of startups will fail. However, that’s up for debate.

According to a study conducted by global investment firm Cambridge Associates—which tracked the performance of 27,259 venture-backed startups between 1990 and 2010—the statistic is more like 60%. Even in the dotcom crash of 2000, those startups only experienced a failure rate of 79%.

This news got us thinking about other statistics to keep budding entrepreneurs informed. If you’ve been thinking of launching a startup or small business, the following statistics might give you insight into what it’s really like. Your chances of being successful are much better than you might think.

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10 Startup & Small Business Statistics to Be Hopeful About

Startup Statistics

  1. In 2013 the Startup Activity Index (a measure of business creation, market opportunity, and startup density) was at its lowest point in the last twenty years. Today it has gone up three years in a row, reaching close to the peak before the Great Recession drop. Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurship
  2. In the last 2 years, the Rate of New Startup Entrepreneurs in the U.S. has increased 15%. The driver of this trend? An increase in female entrepreneurship. Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurship
  3. Of the top forty metropolitan areas in the United States, Miami-Fort Lauderdale ranked as the number one metro area for startup growth, followed by Austin, TX then Los Angeles, CA. Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurship
  4. In 2017, computer systems design firms were #1 on the list of the “10 Fastest Growing Industries in the U.S.” Construction-related fields took spots #2 and #3. Sageworks
  5. Having two founders is better than one: You’ll raise 30% more capital; you’ll grow 3x as fast; and you’ll be 19% less likely to scale up prematurely. Serious Startups

Small Business Statistics 

  1. Small businesses, classified as fewer than 500 employees, make up 99.9% all U.S. businesses. Small Business Administration
  2. The majority of business owners are 50-88 years old (51%), followed by 33-49 year-olds (33%), and 35 year-olds and under (16%). Bureau of Labor Statistics
  3. According to the most recent U.S. census, only 50.8% of entrepreneurs have a bachelor’s degree. United States Census Data
  4. Small businesses operating in finance, real estate, and insurance have the highest success rates (as defined by still being in operation after 4 years). Serious Startups
  5. Most entrepreneurs (82%) use personal savings to start their businesses, or they get funding from family and friends. Small Business Trends

Starting a business might feel like a gamble—and it is. However, in 2017 entrepreneurs have access to a host of resources and tools that those in the past only dreamed about.

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