Small businesses have such a big impact on their communities, and the world at large, that it might be time to reconsider refering to them as "small." According to the World Bank, small businesses have a major impact on the world economy, especially in emerging countries. In such nations, small and medium enterprises contribute up to 60 percent of total employment and up to 40 percent of national income. Small businesses figure to frame their economies in emerging countries in the coming decades, and they're already doing so in developed nations, such as the United States and Canada. The following statistics show just how big small businesses have become.
• The U.S. Small Business Administration notes that small businesses make up 99.7 percent of all employers in the United States. Percentages are similar in Canada, where BDC, a bank devoted exclusively to entrepreneurs, notes that 99.8 percent of businesses employ fewer than 499 workers.
• Hundreds of thousands of new businesses are started each month, with Yahoo! reporting that about 543,000 entrepreneurs open a business in a typical month.
• Small businesses benefit one another, as a 2017 report from the Canadian firm FreshBooks found that 66 percent of small businesses outsource services to other small businesses.
• No business is too small to be a small business. In fact, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics noted that microbusinesses, which are defined as firms that employ between one and nine employees, accounted for 75 percent of all private-sector employers as recently as 2013.
• Small businesses and happiness might be linked. A 2019 survey from Guidant Financial and the online lending marketplace LendingClub found that 78 percent of small business owners rated their level of happiness as an average of eight on a scale of one to 10 (10 being the happiest).
• Female entrepreneurs are on the rise. A 2017 report from American Express found that female entrepreneurship grew by 114 percent between 1997 and 2017.