New Thumbtack survey shows small business owners are worried about the future of the economy

SAN FRANCISCO–()–Today, Bugthe modern home management platform, announced the results of its 2022 Small Business Usability Survey, where small business owners rated federal, state and local government support for small businesses. Surveying more than 2,800 small business owners, the survey found a sharp drop in optimism around the economy from previous years, with nearly half (49%) of all service professionals anticipating worsening commercial conditions over the next three months. After an initial increase in government support to help ease the economic impact of the pandemic, small business owners now report feeling like the government is failing them, with 21 states receiving a failing grade when rated on small business friendliness, regulations, taxes, training opportunities, and more.

While small businesses are uncertain about the future, consumer desire to support small businesses remains strong. Information gathered from more than 1,000 consumers in a gen-pop survey found that more than a third (37%) of Americans are spending more on small businesses than a year ago and that the average consumer is willing to pay a 10% price increase. to support a small business rather than a national retailer. Supporting small businesses remains a priority for consumers, with 80% of Americans considering at least using local small businesses in their day-to-day spending and of those 80%, around 50% say it’s their top or strongest consideration. .

“Current economic conditions and waning government support following the pandemic have small businesses worried about what the future holds,” said Marco Zappacosta, co-founder and CEO of Thumbtack. “As inflation continues to impact the majority of industries, it is crucial that government organizations at all levels come together to support small businesses.”

“Business has been good over the past year, and being based in Delaware has given us the opportunity to grow as a company.” said Daniel Turcios, Thumbtack pro and owner of Primer paint and drywall. “There’s plenty of opportunity and support here for small businesses like ours, and with the increased demand we’ve seen over the past year, we hope to grow our business later this year.”

State, Federal and Municipal Rankings

Small business owners rated government small business friendliness at the city, state, and federal levels, with overall ratings dropping in all areas from previous years. The federal government received an “F” grade this year, down from a “C+” grade last year, a sign of the general decline in opinion of small businesses.

This year, the majority of states received below average ratings. Delaware received the highest rating of an “A+” and was the only state to receive an A rating, followed by Idaho with a “B+” and Arkansas with a “B-” . Florida and Mississippi received “C+” grades; Hawaii, Maine, and Oklahoma received “C” grades; and Colorado, New Mexico, Rhode Island, South Carolina and Utah received “C-” grades from local service professionals. The number of states that have received an “F” rating has quadrupled this year, with fourteen states receiving the lowest grade.

The city’s results mirror the state’s results, with 70% of areas receiving failing grades. Only three cities received above-average ratings this year: Boise, ID (“A-”), Orlando, FL (“B+”), and Providence, RI (“B”). Of 20 cities, eight received an “F,” including Chicago, IL; New Orleans, LA; New York, NY; Oakland, California; Phoenix, Arizona; Portland, OR; San Francisco, California; and Washington, DC.

Economic uncertainty fuels investment problems

Asked about worries about an impending recession, small business owners cited slowing work (37%) as their biggest concern, followed by fear of not being able to support themselves (34%). With continued economic uncertainty, small businesses need to take action to stay afloat. 72% of small businesses charge higher prices than a year ago. This is the result of rising prices for materials and supplies and energy/gas.

Current economic conditions are also impacting how small business owners view the future of their business, both from a retirement perspective and potential expansion. The majority (64%) of small business owners considering retirement options have delayed their retirement due to financial issues. Another 20% want to retire, but have no one to sell or leave their business to.

On the other hand, nearly two-thirds (61%) of respondents said they wanted to grow their business. 29% plan to do so in the next year, while 15% say they are waiting for economic conditions to improve.

Although there is a clear desire to invest in their businesses, hiring has remained an issue for small business owners over the past year. 69% of respondents had encountered at least one hiring barrier in the past year and more than half of respondents who hired employees in the past year (52%) said it was difficult to do.

Looking for government intervention

Only 25% of small business owners believe that the federal government supports qualified professionals like them, which increases slightly to 30% for state government and 32% for local government, showing that there is room for improvement. According to small businesses, the main ways governments can support local professionals include:

  • At the federal level: Reduced (48%) and simplified (46%) taxes.
  • At the state level: Reduced and streamlined regulatory and licensing requirements (49%) and expanded access/improved training and education programs (43%).
  • At local level : Investments in local transport and infrastructure (43%) and expanded access to training programs or improved training and education programs (43%).

In the survey, now in its 11th year, 43 states received grades ranging from “A+” to “F” on overall small business friendliness as well as regulations, taxes, training opportunities, and more. . For full results, please see our survey page or consult our blog.

2022 Small Business Usability Survey Methodology

In a survey of bedbug professionals in the home maintenance, home construction, and home systems industries (34%), as well as events, education, health, and welfare being, pets and business services, more than 2,800 responses were collected nationwide as of August 3. 2022 to September 22, 2022 with a margin of error of +/- 2%. A sufficient sample size was collected to rank 43 states and 20 metropolitan areas. The eight graduated measures assess overall government support, ease of starting a business, ease of hiring employees, labor regulations, tax regulations, licensing regulations, and availability and usefulness. training and networking programs. Thumbtack’s Small Business Friendliness Survey represents the largest ongoing study in the United States of the perceptions of small businesses in the local service industry on government policy.

2022 Consumer Gen-pop Survey Methodology

This sample of 1,000 U.S. adults (ages 18-65) was surveyed September 27-28, 2022. Sampling was weighted to achieve gender and generational representativeness, aligned with U.S. Census demographics. DKC Analytics conducted and analyzed this survey with a sample obtained using the Pollfish survey delivery platform, which offers online surveys worldwide via mobile apps and the mobile web as well as the web Office. No post-stratification was applied to the results.

About the bug

Thumbtack is a technology leader building the modern home management platform. With the Thumbtack app, homeowners can manage their home effortlessly – knowing with confidence what to do, when to do it, and who to hire. Bringing the $600 billion home services industry online, Thumbtack empowers millions of homeowners to repair, maintain and improve their most prized possession. Hundreds of thousands of local service professionals, from painters to plumbers to photographers, use the Thumbtack platform to grow their business every year. The company is backed by Sequoia Capital, Tiger Global Management, Javelin Venture Partners, Baillie Gifford and CapitalG, among others.

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