Top Small Business Owner Concerns

Surveys offer statistics on small business owners' top challenges and how they plan to attack them.

Social Media

In an effort to understand and track small businesses behaviors, preferences and attitudes, Western Union conducted a survey of a random sample panel of 501 U.S. small business respondents in addition to a survey of another 503 earlier in 2012.

The random sample survey targeted respondents based on representative proportions of active, legally registered, small business owners in the United States. The survey helped to identify specific attitudes, needs, preferences and behaviors.

The report highlights small business owner concerns as well as some differences in habits among old and young business owners. younger business owners are more likely to spend money on investments in the business while the older owners are more interested in putting money toward savings and paying down debts as they wait for the economy to strengthen. The younger owners show a more optimistic view overall for the stability of small business.

Read on to see where you fit in the mix and view the graphs to the left for more insights. Click on the image to view a larger version.

Revenue outlook

  • 45% of small business owners 44 and younger predicted increased revenues for balance of 2012, vs. 24% 45 and older.
  • Decrease: 38% of younger owners felt revenues were going to decrease vs. 56% of 45 year+ owners.

Marketing spending

  • 32% of small business owners under 44 planned on increasing their marketing spending versus 20% of 45-54

New products/services

  • 43% of small business owners under 44 planned on offering new products and services, versus 39% of 45-54

Social media usage

Discounts and promotions

  • 32% of small business owners under 44 are willing to offer discounts and promotions, vs. 22% of 45-54

Investing in business and infrastructure

  • If there was extra cash, 22% of small business owners under 44 would invest in business IT and infrastructure, vs. 14% of 45-54

Saving money

  • 53% of owners 45-54 yrs were likely to put extra cash in a savings account, versus 44% of 44 and younger


Data and images provided by Western Union.