The decade long expansion led to higher sales volumes, a larger proportion of expanding firms, a lower proportion of struggling firms, and almost universal access to the Internet, according to the research.
The release of the study, which is summarized in a report titled US Small Businesses in 2000: A Dynamic Market, coincides with the start of small business week, which runs from May 6 to 12.
Research showed that US small business owners are generally mature, stable, well-educated, affluent, tech-savvy and financially more sophisticated than the average America.
In addition, the study found that:
- more than half of small businesses are family-owned
- about 25% are home-based
- 66% have fewer than five employees
- 43% are service firms, which are the largest and fastest growing group
- almost 80% are either expanding or stable.
Line of Succession
The report finds that more than 40% of small business owners have no formal plan for passing their businesses on when they die or retire, despite more than half being over 50.
Other findings include:
- 70% provide medical benefits, up 20% since 1994
- small-business owners rely extensively on professionals for advice and assistance
- personal relationships are important to small-business owners, with two-thirds preferring to deal with a single advisor for both personal and business financial needs.