SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Top of mind for small business owners are health care costs, taxes, and hiring, and over one third have already taken action as a result of tax policy changes – this according to findings from a survey of American small businesses by SmartBiz Loans, the #1 online, SBA loan marketplace, and bank-enabling technology platform. According to the survey, 53% and 52% respectively, of small business owners named (1) the cost of providing health insurance for employees and (2) the effect of changes in the new tax law as key business considerations. What’s more, 35% of respondents report the new tax plan has already caused them to make changes in their business, with 10% reporting that they are actively investing in new equipment or staffing.
Small business owners were surveyed on a number of topics including major concerns for the business, their growth plans for the year, hiring and talent, as well as their financing plans.
“The survey illustrates that small business owners are aware of macro trends that may impact their business,” said Evan Singer, CEO of SmartBiz Loans. “But their focus is instead on the day-to-day functions of running their company. And the great news is that the new tax plan is helping to drive immediate growth.”
One of the highest-ranking concerns for owners (with 49% reporting it as a top concern) was finding and hiring quality employees. Nine out of 10 owners said they value experience over education in new hires, yet 31% said they were willing to hire candidates who lack some qualifications and train them. This is an important measure to help retain and appeal to new workers in a difficult hiring environment. Owners are also deploying other measures to appeal to workers:
- 51% of owners said they were offering more flexible work arrangements
- 33% said they were increasing wages
Overall, small business owners remain bullish on the economy. Almost 57% of small business owners said their outlook on business growth over the next 12 months was “fairly positive” or “positive.”
“This positivity points to the resiliency of small business owners,” said Singer. “They know circumstances are changing, and they’re adapting as needed.”
Capital is an important player in that growth, and 31% of respondents said that securing lower cost financing was a priority concern. According to the survey, 22% of owners agree or strongly agree that access to credit has become easier in the last couple of years, though 49% of small business owners agree or strongly agree that the cost of credit has increased.
To date, SmartBiz Loans’ platform has facilitated more than $500 million in SBA loan originations and helped expand access to capital for small business owners seeking SBA loans. On average, 90% of the loan applications SmartBiz Loans refers to its bank partners are approved.
“These small business owners really are the backbone of the economy and I’m confident that they will continue to grow. We at SmartBiz Loans are honored to work with banks and the SBA to support them in that growth,” said Singer.
ABOUT THE RESEARCH
SmartBiz Loans’ research represents results from a survey of 289 U.S. small business owners. The survey was conducted April 9 through April 17, 2018.
ABOUT SMARTBIZ LOANS®
SmartBiz Loans is a unique combination of an online SBA loan marketplace and a bank enabling technology platform. The Company's online software provides the SBA preferred lenders that utilize SmartBiz, customized and automated origination, underwriting and documentation assistance, making approval and funding fast and easy for small business owners.
SmartBiz Advisor™ is the first, AI-driven online education tool to make financial insights and analysis provided by a typical CFO available to small businesses at no cost. With SmartBiz Advisor, small business owners can learn whether their small business is likely to be approved for a low-cost SBA loan from SmartBiz bank partners before they apply, and also monitor the financial health of their business over time.
SmartBiz Loans is based in San Francisco and was founded in 2009 by a team of experienced financial services entrepreneurs with backing from leading venture capital firms including Venrock, Investor Growth Capital, First Round Capital, Baseline Ventures, and Uncork Capital. Learn more at www.smartbizloans.com.