Are Women Running the Small Business World?

According to Beyonce, women run the world. And while women have made great strides in so many ways, and broken into so many areas that were previously closed off to them, we might not go quite that far yet. But with that being said, when it comes to the world of small business, women are actually kind of crushing it, and have been for a while, although the last few years have meant a lot of major setbacks. So what does the landscape look like for women in the small business world right now, and what kind of help is available to allow women to continue to run things? 

Women in Small Business by the Numbers

Women entrepreneurs have come a long way since the days of nineteenth-century women like Rebecca Pennock Lukens, who became “America’s first female CEO of an industrial company,” and former slave Bridget ‘Bidy’ Mason, who built a West Coast real-estate empire. Those impressive women were outliers in the country at the time, and while there can still be obstacles standing in the way of getting ahead these days, things are looking up, with a few Covid-related caveats (which we’ll look at below). Check out these numbers:women in small business infographic

  • In the last 20 years, the number of female business owners has increased by 114%.
  • According to 2019 numbers from the National Women’s Business Council, that year, women owned nearly 13 million businesses in the United States (around 42% of all companies). Compare that to 1972, when there were only 402,000 women-owned businesses, representing 4.6% of all firms.
  • In 2019, women-owned businesses employed 9.4 million workers and generated $1.9 trillion in annual revenue. 
  • According to a 2021 survey by Small Business Trends, 31% of all small business or franchise owners were women last year, up from 27% in 2020. 
  • Women launch more than 1,200 new businesses every single day in the US.
  • The growth rate of women-owned businesses is 5%.
  • In 2018, women owned 4 out of every 10 businesses in the U.S.
  • In 2017, 1,821 net new women-owned businesses were launched every day. Women of color founded 64% of those new businesses.
  • From 2007 – 2018, total employment by women-owned businesses rose 21%, while employment for all businesses declined by 0.8%. 
  • In 2018, women of color accounted for 47% of all women-owned businesses, employed 2.2 million people, and generated $386.6 billion in revenues.
  • Businesses owned by women of color grew by 163% between 2007 and 2018.
  • Women of color were responsible for 89% of newly created businesses in 2019.
  • The number of businesses owned by Latinx women has grown by 172% in the last 10 years.
  • 30% of women business owners have owned their business for 10 years or more
  • Women are slightly more likely to start a business than men, according to the SCORE report.

Turns out, these days, women are running a lot. But that’s not to say there aren’t challenges. Let’s look at two: the pandemic and funding.

Has the Pandemic Derailed Progress?

The last few years have been tough on everyone, but the pandemic seems to have hit women business owners particularly hard, probably because of the multiple roles women are expected to fulfill, even while running a business.

According to data from Goldman Sachs, almost half of all women business owners, and nearly 60% of African American women small business owners, continue to struggle financially due to the pandemic. A smaller share of men owners (39%) said this. Not only that, but:

business closed down with a sign that says "closed permanently due to covid-19"

  • At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, from February to April 2020, the number of female-owned businesses dropped 25%. 
  • 21% of women-owned businesses experienced revenue loss due to Covid. 
  • Goldman Sachs also found that around 4 in 10 female small business owners are worried the debt they’ve accumulated will hurt their ability to recover – and even more African American owners have this concern.
  • Bank of America’s 2021 Women Business Owner Spotlight found that around half of women entrepreneurs cut their own pay to keep staff members employed during the pandemic.
  • More than half of African American women small business owners said they’ll need to take out a business loan this year; only 27% of their male peers said the same.
  •  7 in 10 women business owners under 45 said they or their employees have been plagued by mental health issues during the pandemic.

But even with all of this bad news, women business owners are optimistic. Despite the challenges they’ve faced in the last few years, a full 77% of women business owners expect their business to survive through the COVID-19 pandemic, and 61% expect their revenues to grow over the next year, compared to 31% last year. Not only that, but 76% of women business owners report being somewhat or very happy, while just 14% report being very or somewhat unhappy.

So women entrepreneurs are continuing, and will continue to triumph, despite the challenges thrown at them. But there is still another issue to look at: the disparities in funding for women’s small businesses. Fortunately, there is some help in that department that women can take advantage of. 

Where Women Entrepreneurs Can Get Help

What does the landscape of funding for women’s small businesses look like now? Well, it’s complicated. While studies show that female-owned businesses are safer for investors, that businesses founded by women earn twice as much money as those founded by men, they have better loan repayment records, and they are less likely to declare bankruptcy than men, female entrepreneurs usually face greater difficulties when it comes to obtaining funds for their businesses, and are submitted to more scrutiny than their male counterparts. According to Sharon Miller, the President of Small Business at Bank of America, “Women think they have to have it perfectly right before they go to the bank. Many men come in without even having a concept.”

And consider this: piggy bank next to a gold money sign and money

  • Women receive an average loan of $39,000, while men receive an average loan of $44,000.
  • Only 25% of women seek financing for their businesses. In contrast, 34% of men look for financing from investors. 
  • Women who do seek funding are successful in 31% of cases, while 34% of men who applied for a loan said that their funding request was approved. 
  • Groupon reports that 54% of women entrepreneurs say they’re held to a different standard than their male counterparts when accessing capital. 
  • Research from the Kauffman Foundation shows women-owned startups pay higher interest rates and take on more collateral than similar businesses owned by men.
  • Of the $130 billion venture capital funds invested last year, companies with a female CEO got less than 3% of the funding. And less than 0.2% of all VC funding went to women of color.

But since around 47% of women small business owners now have less than three months’ cash reserves, having access to capital might just be a make or break thing. Without equal access to capital, women business owners do not have equal opportunities to grow, innovate, or scale, limiting their ability to succeed. 

person at the top of a bar graph grabbing the hand of someone below and helping them up

Fortunately, if you are a woman entrepreneur, there are avenues open to you to help you move forward. First of all, you need to be creative and, as Lakshmi Balachandra, Ph.D., assistant professor, entrepreneurship at Babson College, says “turn the challenges into opportunities.” She recommends networking, seeking out a mentor (and being a mentor in return), buying from women-owned businesses – and, of course, exploring all of your options for capital. 

There are various alternatives open to you for funding your business, including:

  • VC firms led by women or with a solid record of investing in women-owned businesses, like 37 Angels, Belle Capital, and the Women’s Venture Fund. There are also organizations that help connect women with investors, like Astia and Women’s Capital Connection.
  • In partnership with Seneca Women, Bank of America has launched the Bank of America Access to Capital Directory, a platform that helps educate women-owned businesses to “navigate the capital landscape and identify potential sources of funding, such as equity, debt, and grant capital.” 
  • The government’s Small Business Association offers the 8(a) Business Development program that helps small, disadvantaged businesses compete in the marketplace, as well as a Lender Match tool for finding capital. The SBA also hosts  the InnovateHER Challenge every year. Any woman-owned business that offers a product or service that has an impact on the lives of women and their families may be eligible to participate in this challenge.
  • Government-backed Women’s Business Centers offer training to help bridge the funding gap in multiple locations around the country.
  • WomenOwned is a database that allows women to have access to thousands of grants and assistance programs. These grants are all woman-owned and minority-owned small business funding options.
  • The Count-Me-In/Make Mine a Million organization offers a variety of events and grants for woman-owned businesses that are trying to expand their business to over one million dollars in revenue. 
  • KeyBank offers the Key4Women program, which aims to provide women entrepreneurs with capital and financial assistance. Since 2005, KeyBank has lent more than $6 billion with this initiative to woman-owned businesses.
  • Wells Fargo is actually one of the leading lenders for woman-owned businesses. They offer multiple financial solutions designed to support woman-owned businesses, whether they are well-established and looking to grow or just starting out. They also offer lines of credit for woman business owners.
  • The Women’s Economic Ventures Loan Program, established in 1995, works to help woman-owned businesses that do not qualify for traditional bank financing. They offer a variety of different funding options with a fixed rate of 5-10%.

The above resources are just some of the places that are helping to fill the funding gap, and that  women entrepreneurs can turn to for assistance. There are many more, including various small business loans and grants, as well as organizations that cater to specific regions. 

Women have made an enormous impact on the world of small business, despite historical obstacles and disparities in funding. Woman-owned businesses have a high success rate and tend to be a low risk for investors, so it’s time lenders caught up with the times and backed these businesses. Otherwise, they’ll be the ones left behind as women continue to move towards running the small business world. 

Misconceptions About Owning A Small Business

Most small business owners will tell you that owning your own business is well worth the effort. However, they will also tell you that it’s no walk in the park. Many people don’t understand the work that goes into management, marketing, and making your business run smoothly. It’s not as simple as having a good business plan: there are many misconceptions about what it takes to make a business work. Here are a few common misconceptions people have about the small business world. 

Misconception: You work whenever you wantafrican american man  sitting with his head on a table and hands over the back of his head.

Some people think that small business owners can roll out of bed whenever they want, start their workday at noon, and still have time to come home to their family for dinner. In fact, many aspiring entrepreneurs cite that a flexible schedule is what they find most enticing about starting a business. However, while they might get to choose their hours, most small business owners end up working more than other people. As the saying goes, “entrepreneurs get to choose which 20 hours a day they work”. Even if you don’t stick to the traditional 9-5 you still need to put in all the hours it takes to make your business thrive.

Misconception: You work wherever you want

There are a lot of people who dream about traveling the world while working. The reality is, business owners (even those who operate a virtual business) often find it harder to turn off their entrepreneurial brain and enter vacation mode. As employees, it is easy to walk away from your desk at the end of the day. Business owners, however, find it hard to shut off. Even if a small business owner is “hands off”, they may still feel the need to be local and accessible to put out any potential fires. 

Misconception: You’re the boss, you call the shotsgroup of people looking down a magnifying glass.

It’s easy to imagine that if you own a business, you hold executive power and are in charge of all decisions. While that might be true for some things, in the end you also answer to your clients. You will also most likely rely on some sort of team: between partnerships, vendors, clients, and investors, there will always be many voices offering input. 

Misconception: You spend every day doing what you love

People often start businesses based on an idea they feel passionately about.  But once that idea becomes reality, small business owners can find themselves completely consumed with running the day-to-day operations of their business. They often find that they have less time to appreciate what they were once so passionate about. From balancing the books to managing employees, a business owner must be willing to wear all hats. 

Misconception: The greater the risk, the greater the payoff.chess pieces on a board.

The myth of the entrepreneur who puts everything on the line on a whim, only to find immediate success, can be a dangerous one. Unfortunately, the reality is that many small businesses fail. In order to have a chance at success, a lot of careful and cautious planning needs to go into building a business. Risk assessment is a critical part of building a small business. Good business owners need to be smart, strategic, and savvy, as well as persistent and patient, because business ownership is all about playing the long game. 

For most small business owners, the benefits far outweigh the challenges. Owning your own business allows you to exercise many different skills, gives you control over your vision and design, and ultimately can be very rewarding. Just remember to be realistic about what you are getting into.

Do You Qualify For The Small Business Health Care Tax Credit?

If you offer health insurance to your employees, it can be costly, but luckily there is a silver lining- the small business health care tax credit! One of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act, ACA, is the Small Employer Health Care Tax Credit which allows certain businesses to save money while offering health insurance to their employees. While it is a great financial saver for businesses, not all businesses can get the tax credit. There are some qualifications that a small business must meet in order to get the health care tax credit.

a list with 3 checkmarks and a pencil next to it insude a blue circle.
You must meet certain qualifications in order to receive a tax credit.


The Small Business Health Care Tax Credit

This credit allows small businesses to receive a tax credit for paying at least half of their employees health insurance premiums. In the beginning, the small business health care tax credit was not much, ranging only 35% of eligible health insurance premiums. But luckily, over the years it has changed. The tax credit now equates to up to 50% of employer-paid health insurance premiums. 

cartoon figure sitting on top of "50%" numbers
The tax credit now equates to up to 50% of employer-paid health insurance premiums. 

Small business owners cannot take the tax credit for insurance premiums paid on their own behalf. This includes partnerships, and sole proprietors. 


In order to qualify for the health care tax, a business must meet the following criteria:

  1. Have fewer than 25 full-time employees.
  2. Your average employee salary must be less than $54,000 as of the 2019 tax year. 
  3. You pay at least 50% of your full-time employees health insurance premiums, also known as a “qualifying arrangement.”

Flexible Credit

An advantage of having this kind of credit is that it is flexible. It can be carried toward the next year, or back to other tax years. So, if your business does not owe tax in a certain year, then claiming the tax credit will not do you any good. However, if you owe tax for a prior year, you can apply your credit to that. Or you can choose to keep the tax credit and save it for next year.

Claiming the Tax Credit

The health care tax credit can be calculated and claimed using the Form 8941. The form must be attached to the business’s tax return, and then after it is processed, the credit reduces any income tax the business owes.

Tax-exempt organizations should file Form 990-T. This tax credit is non-refundable, although it can be carried towards either the following or prior tax years. Also, tax-exempt organizations that have no taxable income can qualify for a refund of the credit, as long as it doesn’t exceed their Medicare tax liability and income tax withholding.

calculator and pen on top of a sheet with numbers on it.
If your business does not qualify for the tax credit, there is still hope on saving money with tax deductions.

Small Business Tax Deductions

If your business does not qualify for the tax credit, there is still hope on saving money. There is a deduction for employee premium payments. Some businesses may be able to get both the deductions and tax credit!

The small business health care tax can help a small business offer their employees health insurance without fearing the great costs. As long as you meet the qualifications to receive the tax credit, then you will be eligible. The fewer employees you have, for example, less than 10 full-time employees who are paid an average of $25.000 or less will get you a bigger credit. And if you do not qualify for the tax credit, at least you can get deductions!

If you are looking to provide health insurance to your employees and want to save money, EZ.Insure can help. We will find a plan that meets your needs financially. We will find the plan that gives you deductions and notify you on whether you qualify for both deductions and the tax credit. Our goal is to save you as much money, while providing you with the best plan. Call 888-350-1890, or email us at to speak directly with one of our agents, or enter your zip code in the bar above to get free instant quotes. We will never sell your information to telemarketers as others do.

Cybercrime Stats and Why You’re at Risk

It’s no secret that the internet is changing the way society interacts. This goes from social media affecting our relationships and the way we view each other, to the rising rates of cybercrime on the web. 

a man with a suit and tie with his finger choosing a one star review.
The damage an act of cyber theft can leave on your business is crippling, it can also ruin your reputation.

The damage an act of cyber theft can leave on your business is crippling. Not only can it leave you feeling violated, scared, and confused, it can also ruin your reputation for safety amongst your customers–one fatal mistake for any small business. It’s already hard enough to survive in the current corporate atmosphere.

The first step is to be aware of the risks. The next one is to learn how to protect yourself.

Cybercrime Stats

First, let’s take a look at what constitutes cybercrime:

  • Selling illegal items online
  • Human trafficking
  • Identity theft
  • Malware/Ransomware
  • Privacy violations
  • Digital currency scams

The sad fact that combined, all of these contributed to over $1 trillion in profits for cybercriminals across their industries, and that number is still growing. Things seem bad now, but what does the future hold if these crimes continue to rise? To put things into perspective, most countries fall below the trillion-dollar mark–so cybercrime could be considered its own nation on profits alone.


Social media is the biggest channel criminals use to engage with people outside of the dark web. While sites like Facebook do invest money in protecting people’s private information, most people readily volunteer this info on their public pages. A criminal simply has to look at a profile to see things like where you’re checking in, what current interests you have, and even job history or address. To put things into perspective:

  • Social engineering is more useful the more information you have about someone.
  • Cybercrime tools are widely available for purchase.
  • Social media fraud attacks on the rise, up to 43% since 2018.

This provokes the question of how much balance can someone maintain. While these numbers are dire, there’s no getting around using social media for marketing.

It seems like no one is safe, but small business owners have a lot more to lose. 85% of phishing or social engineering attacks were reported by organizations in 2019, and that’s just the reported ones. We can’t even begin to estimate how many are in the private sector as some could be so subtle, they’re either ignored or outright passed over.

Person sitting at a laptop with a dark hood on, with a question mark over the face.
If you’re in the professional services industry, such as any business needing a license to operate, then you’re most at risk for these attacks.

For any company, malware is going to be your biggest threat. In 2018, malware cost companies upwards for $2 million, growing over 10% from the previous year.

If you’re in the professional services industry, such as any business needing a license to operate, then you’re most at risk for these attacks. This is because your industry type often has a wealth of private data for your clients, and yet most go with little to no protection.

Finally, the costs of cybercrime are intense. Top companies pay an average of $25 a minute to keep themselves protected, altogether, the costs can soar to around $3 million. That’s an incredible sum just considering it’s to protect against a criminal industry that’s making a hundred times more.

What Is the Best Way to Protect Yourself?

Odds are, you might have fallen victim to some form of cybercrime in the past. If you’re currently suffering, we have a guide here to help you out.

If you’re lucky enough to still be on the other side, then the best thing to do is join the industry with coverage, malware protection, and simple scam awareness.

lock with chaines that are black with the words "data protection" on the lock.
The best way to protect yourself is with cyber liabilty coverage which offers malware protection, and simple scam awareness.

Cyber liability insurance is designed for just these types of situations. With this policy, you’ll have coverage for:

  • Lost or damaged electronic data
  • Computer operations Interruption
  • Privacy & Notification to customers and other affected parties
  • Some may offer protection from lawsuits

This is your first line of defense, besides that, keep up to date with current protective software, and if something seems too good to be true from an email, it probably is.

EZ.Insure is there to make sure you’re not alone in protecting your business. Your agent will answer any questions you have, compare different plans for you, and even sign you up when you’re ready, free of charge and without having to worry about being hounded by endless calls. To get started simply enter your zip code in the bar above, or you can speak to an agent by emailing or calling 888-350-1890. EZ.Insure makes the entire process easy, and quick.

How Commercial Insurance is Changed by Risk Management

With all the recent catastrophes (and just plain old inflation), we’ve been watching insurance costs rise across the board. Higher deductibles are something even low-risk individuals are seeing. Unfortunately, insurance companies have to manage their bottom line, and doing this means raising rates.

The biggest problem pushing these rising costs is hurricane season. With their catastrophic damages, coming, again and again, commercial property rates are rising across the board–even affecting locations technically in a safer zone. The risk management is in response to this problem.

chess pieces to teach business owners risk management
Like chess, insurance companies plan out how their coverage is sold.

What Is Risk Management?

According to the Oxford dictionary, risk management (for business) is defined as “the forecasting and evaluation of financial risks together with the identification of procedures to avoid or minimize their impact.”

Basically, businesses (and homeowners as well) know losses can happen in the future. It’s not a question of “if something will happen,” but “when something happens, what will I do?”  The practice of asking these questions and then developing proper procedures is known as loss control.

For most businesses, this practice comes even without insurance, but the underwriting process mostly involves it before signing a commercial policy, especially now.

How Is It Affecting Commercial Insurance?

The first part of these changes come with the vicious backswing of all these catastrophes. With hurricanes alone, the damages swing up into $200 billion. Pairing this with the horrors Malibu saw just earlier this year, and you have an industry drained of its resources.

With all the payouts, it makes sense that the insurance industry has to “refill its coffers” so to speak. However, this comes from all of the people insured. So, the immediate effect is higher deductibles for some, and in places like Malibu, outright declination of coverage because the properties are “too high of a risk.”

The second, more positive result is instating risk management experts in insurance firms. Certain companies can offer in-house advice to businesses when they purchase policies from them. All in all, who can turn down loss control when it comes bundled with your commercial insurance?

What Does This Mean for Me?

For the average business, this could mean higher rates, but that isn’t a new topic of discussion. For people in certain industries, such as manufacturing where there is a high risk, it can mean that you will pay more as well, but you could have a risk management team applied to your policy.

construction foreman with clipboard for risk management
Some industries like construction are affected by this more than others.

2020 will most likely be a rough year for everyone, and the only solace is that insurance agents are now pushed to provide more information for businesses signing up. With more focus on controlling risks (that can be controlled) comes safer management in businesses across the board.

Besides that, the only thing we can do is make smart investments to pay for the premiums down the road and provide a solid hand in risk management. Thankfully, insurance agents will have your back with this down the line.

With EZ.Insure, your agent will answer any questions you have, compare different plans for you, and even sign you up when you’re ready, free of charge and without having to worry about being hounded by endless calls. To get started simply enter your zip code in the bar above, or you can speak to an agent by emailing, or calling 888-350-1890. EZ.Insure makes the entire process easy, and quick.

Grow Your Business From Home With Social Media Marketing

Experts know that marketing is an online world now, also known as SMM (Social Media Marketing.) No tool has a tighter grasp on the minds of our people than social media. These sites are Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Youtube, Reddit, Linkedin, and Snapchat, plus many others that focus on even smaller niches.

phone screen with social media marketing apps
You can run all these great platforms right in the palm of your hand!


These platforms will give you a marketing edge, but only if you master them. There is a lot of noise on the internet nowadays, so it’s important to be bold and clear with your online marketing. Need some starting tips? Here are four:


1. Pick the Right Platform

Whether you’re writing blog posts as your medium or social networks, picking the right platform is the first step. Each one has a different feel and will benefit your company in a different way. Are you a community-based business? Facebook, along with Facebook ads, may be the right way to go. This platform is solid when it comes to building a group with shared interests.


Instagram is less about community and more about visual interaction. For this type of content, your business will need to focus on snappy advertisements that deliver a ton of info in a square picture or video. 


Twitter is another popular choice. Like Instagram, the focus in on quick content. Unlike Instagram, Twitter engages a step further with discussion. The plan here is to capitalize on the snappy conversation by keeping up with replies. This is a great place to hear your customers needs, struggles, and praise. Your user base will interact at a quicker level. Think hard about what your brand wants to say on each platform before you decide.

2.Create Time for Your Social Media Marketing Plan

How much time do you have to devote to your social media platforms? Are you going to be delivering video content through Instagram, or just getting Facebook advertising? No matter what you choose, you need to have a plan ironed out.

woman looking at social media on her phone
Have a spare moment on the bus ride? Take a minute to check in on how your plan is meeting your goals.

Social media campaigns are all over the place. There are apps like Sprout or Hootsuite than assist in community building with schedules. Do you have time to do this yourself, or do you need to hire a content team? Your managing style is important because it will show you not only how your content will be released, but also where your time and effort are needed.


One tip is to use social media analytics to show what your company is already being engaged with. Write down what works and what doesn’t, then adjust your plan to maximize your successes.



3.Engage and Build Your Community


Your target audience needs to feel included. People like to be in a group with others that think like them. This means you should create a group. Your brand is like a banner, paint it in stark colors and know what you’re providing inside and out. People will respond to this, especially if you’re paying attention to your managing plan.


Reach out with social media posts. Not only should you be the business owner, but also the community head. Talk to people that comment and engage with you. Be polite and mind what you say; you’re the voice of your company.


Doing this will not just improve brand awareness, it’ll also get you a dedicated following. Businesses thrive on trust, and you can build it quickly through this organic reach.

4.Measure Your Success

This is where most business owners fail. You’ve got your community. You’ve got your content marketing in full swing. But then that’s it. You don’t measure anything, and you let your business spin around willy-nilly.

social media on a laptop showing business success
You can measure all your business success from your laptop. Check your posts, engagement, and then reuse what works.


Don’t be like others. Stick to your social media marketing strategy from earlier, and don’t be afraid to experiment. When you fail in small ways, it’ll improve your business when you continue on through what works. Success is measured not in the strides you take, but in the way you pick yourself up when you fall.


For small businesses, your brand on social media could make or break you. Most people research, decide, and buy online now, from their phones on the couch. Putting your company in that market place provides excellent exposure and can lead to huge growth. Just follow your plan, and you can find success.