C-Suite Wednesday — Main Street Optimism Highest since 2012 Says Capital One

April 5, 2017

By Bob Coleman
Editor, C-Suite Wednesday

C-Suite Wednesday — Main Street Optimism Highest since 2012 Says Capital One

Check out the stats:

Fifty-percent of all small business owners report their financial position is about the same as a year ago and 50 percent also expect to be in a better position six months from now; meanwhile only four percent expect to be in a worse position in six months – the lowest reported percentage since fall 2012.

  • Women and millennials are driving optimism, with 47 percent of women saying they’ll be in a better financial position six months from now (up 13 points from fall 2016) and 73 percent of millennials expecting better conditions (compared to Gen X at 53 percent, and Baby Boomers at 49 percent).
  • SBOs in the Northeast and South are considerably more optimistic, with 57 percent of SBOs in those regions expecting improved conditions, compared to the Midwest (45 percent) and West (42 percent).

Despite the optimism, most SBOs are still hesitant to invest in the near-term.

  • Only 27 percent of SBOs plan to add more employees in the next six months (compared to 26 percent one year ago) with nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of those hires being full-time associates vs. part-time or contractors.
  • Top factors SBOs believe may impact business include: taxes (50 percent), managing cash flow (32 percent), keeping up with technology (30 percent), minimum wage increases (22 percent), access to capital (16 percent) and immigration reform (9 percent).

Businesses that use data analytics and mobile payments are more likely to have increased sales.

  • Nearly half (46 percent) of SBOs who currently offer mobile payments say sales have increased over the past six months, compared to 35 percent who do not use mobile payments.
  • Similarly, 44 percent of SBOs who use data analytics tools report increased sales, compared to 33 percent who do not.

For additional findings and details from the survey, click here.