Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The Small Business Sector Has Risen

Saying that the recession trimmed the fat off the small business sector would be putting it lightly. Starting your own business is typically an up-hill battle but when the economic floor suddenly fell out from under the feet of so many Americans, a number of both new and old businesses came tumbling down, never to return. But now, data from several sources is showing that optimism regarding small businesses is on the rise with many owners estimating higher revenues and profits over the next 12 months.

According to a report from Wells Fargo and Gallup, the small-business optimism index for August was the highest it has been since the third quarter of 2008. A similar report from the National Federation of Independent Business indicated that last month's optimism was at the fourth-highest level it has been since the group started taking readings of the industry in December 2007. More detailed information from The Wall Street Journal/Vistage Small Business CEO Survey showed that 73 percent of the 678 participating business owners expected higher revenues in the subsequent year. Researchers with this outfit also found that 54 percent of small business owners expected profits to increase during the same time period. After analyzing previous data, it was determined that these are the highest proportions seen in these categories since June of last year.

So, what does all of this mean really? Well, it could mean good things are coming for many small businesses in Michigan and throughout the nation. But the recession is still having lasting effects in some areas, continuing to stop a fraction of business owners from getting on the ride of the recent economic resurgence--roller coaster that it has been in the past handful of years. For some owners, this might mean more cutbacks and closures in the future. But where I live, a number of small businesses have been taking a chance, opening, and subsequently thriving. In our downtown area, local residents can't stop talking about the new market that was built this year--it now houses a slew of entrepreneurs trying their hands at this and that. Elsewhere, restaurant options have been popping up left and right--the key to the food ventures that will last is three-pronged: good food, good service, and good prices.

Talk about a corny image: the key(s) to success! 
Substitute the word "product" for "food" and you have a solid business model for any up-and-coming company. It may seem like a no-brainer, but some owners neglect the obvious route of considering what customers enjoy in a restaurant or an auto shop or a grocery store or any other place of business. It's a rather simple formula and with it, many endeavors have gone far. With the effects of the recession dwindling, the playing field is leveling out and many more business owners will likely see their businesses blossom, as long as they understand their customers and the situations surrounding their businesses.

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