Manchester, New Hampshire is the city deemed the friendliest to small businesses by the small business owners operating there. And the state of New Hampshire ranks second after Texas for the friendliest to small businesses as a whole.
Utah and Colorado join Texas and New Hampshire scoring high grades for being friendly to small business owners.
Joining the Northeast in the unfriendly column are California, Connecticut and Illinois, all of which scored an “F.”
Jon Lieber, chief economist of Thumbtack.com, told Small Business Trends that whether a city or state is friendly or not to small businesses stems from several primary considerations.
Training Programs and Networking Opportunities
“What most influences a business owner’s perception is the presence of training programs, as well as events that allow networking,” Lieber said.
Training mainly refers to the ease with which small businesses can obtain online information regarding rules and regulations pertaining to how small businesses must operate there, Lieber said.
“Websites matter,” he added.
In other words, Lieber says, entrepreneurs and small business owners don’t want stress and hassle when it comes to finding information on how to properly file local taxes, etc.
Opportunities to network are important as well, due to the isolation felt by many running small businesses, Lieber added.
Ease of Complaince
Another factor for small business owners in determining whether a city or state is friendly flows from the ease of regulatory compliance.
One key compliance issue was licensing. Cities and states that require certain professionals to obtain a license didn’t automatically make them unfriendly.
However, if licensing is not carefully monitored, this is liable to increase perceived unfriendliness. Licensed professionals don’t like it when an unlicensed competitor can gain a competitive advantage.
About Thumbstack and the Survey
Thumbtack is an online platform dedicated to connecting local small businesses with customers. Those businesses range from plumbers and house painters to therapists and more. Businesses are able to compete for customers interested in their services via the use of a bidding system.
For the Friendliness survey, around 18,000 U.S.-based small business owners participated by providing a rating of their state and city governments on a range of factors. Thumbtack used more than a dozen metrics to evaluate states and cities against one another.
Welcome to New Hampshire Photo via Shutterstock