Nearly 60 percent of American consumers said that in 2022 they frequently shop at locally owned and operated businesses, according to a new survey report from CG Roxane, which included a survey of 2,000 adults.
It’s an ongoing affection that Americans have for these businesses and a big part of that is trust. CG Roxane’s survey found Americans have more trust in local and family-owned businesses over corporate multinationals and franchises, citing these businesses help the community (39 percent), provide better quality (34 percent), are transparent about sources (32 percent), are more tailored to needs (32 percent), treat employees fairly and put the needs of consumers first (30 percent).
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Further, the report found that 57 percent of consumers were willing to spend more on goods that are locally sourced and 59 percent agree that it is easy to find locally sourced products in their area. Sixty percent of consumers also said they felt very informed about how local businesses are interacting with the community with over half of members from local communities saying they had either benefitted or know people that have benefitted from community involvement by businesses.
The good news is, in the U.S. small businesses are only increasing in number. In fact, in 2021, the U.S. had a reported 32.5 million small businesses, making up 44 percent of all U.S. economic activity and a record peak for the country.
To better understand small business trends in the U.S., Semrush, the online visibility management and content marketing SaaS platform, assessed Americans’ interest in starting new ventures using its proprietary search volume intel. Overall, the company found an increased interest in starting a business, growing by 21 percent over the past four years and a significant spike in July 2020, likely due to the impacts of the pandemic.
Looking at what kind of small businesses Americans had an interest in launching, Semrush found that the most popular was opening a boutique, accounting for almost one-fifth of all entrepreneurs. Starting a business on Etsy was a close second at 17 percent. Cleaning services, vending machines and clothing also ranked in the top five categories.
As Americans research starting a small business, Semrush found that a few key trends were emerging particularly related to the financial side of things, which includes grants and loans to other ways to get support in a venture.
Notably, many small businesses were overwhelmed during the pandemic as they struggled to keep up with changing consumer priorities and COVID-19 restrictions. Positively, financial businesses like American Express have launched programs to help for the past few years to help keep these important businesses’ doors open, from fueling designer collaborations to Visa offering its support with technology.
PayPal has also recently announced a launch especially for U.S. small businesses. The new cashback business Mastercard offers U.S. small businesses the credit card with no annual fee and 2 percent cashback on all purchases with no limit to the cash back that can be earned to reward owners as they make business purchases.
With the offering the company notes that small businesses need an array of tools to fund everyday business expenses flexibly, with credit cards being the second most common form of financing sought by small businesses.
“As small business owners continue to recover from the challenges of the past two years, having multiple financing options to address their capital needs is more important than ever,” said Bernardo Martinez, vice president of global merchant lending at PayPal. “The PayPal Business Cashback Mastercard provides merchants greater value, more choice and the increased flexibility they need to manage their business finances, offering among the best value available on no annual fee business credit cards today.”
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