July 31, 2017

Is your business your main income or a side hustle?

In the U.S., small business is big business. According to data from the U.S. Small Business Administration, there are 28.8 million American small businesses, which comprise 99% of all businesses in the country!

It seems unimaginable that 99 in 100 companies in the United States are small businesses, but it’s easier to wrap your head around this big fact when you understand what constitutes a “small business” for reporting purposes:

  • 17.3% are truly small businesses, with 1-19 employees
  • 16.7% have 20-99 employees
  • 64.1% have 100-500 employees!

So, two-thirds of small businesses are really medium-sized businesses. Still, nearly 5 million U.S. companies have fewer than 20 employees, which means the American small business owner community is larger than the populationof countries like Costa Rica, New Zealand, and Ireland!

Now that we know how the true scope of American small business, how many of those 5 million companies are their owners’ full focus? How many entrepreneurs run a small business as a side hustle for supplemental income?

We recently polled nearly 3,000 small business owners in all 50 states, and we asked if their businesses were their main source of income. Turns out, two-thirds (66%) said yes, and the rest (34%) said no. So, about one-third of U.S. small business owners are running a side business or multiple businesses.

We wanted to know which states have the highest number of all-in entrepreneurs — people who are running a small business as their main source of income. The top spots: Arkansas (88%), Vermont (83%), Iowa (82%), Kansas (82%), and Nebraska (80%). The states with the most side hustlers: Louisiana (41%), Kentucky (43%), South Carolina (47%), Delaware (50%), and Alaska (50%).

Take a look at our full list below and see how your state stacks up.

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