Black-Owned Business Starts Surge, Says GoDaddy Study

May 25, 2023 5:35 PM ET
Rising Above the Challenges graph.

As originally published by GoDaddy’s Venture Forward research initiative

Black Americans are gaining share in the online microbusiness economy. While this demographic faces unique challenges, Black online microbusiness owners are more optimistic than their peers. Microbusinesses are defined as companies with fewer than 10 employees, a unique domain, and an active website.

The Big Fact

Black-owned online microbusinesses now comprise one-sixth of the national total and about 1 in 2 Black-owned online microbusinesses started since 2020, according to GoDaddy’s most recent Venture Forward National Survey of online microbusiness owners who are customers. That’s more than five times the share of the pie for Black majority-owners across U.S. businesses of all kinds.

The Survey

GoDaddy’s Venture Forward initiative began in 2018 to quantify the impact of online microbusinesses on their local economies and provide a unique view into the attitudes, demographics, and needs of these entrepreneurs. The U.S. national survey started in 2019 and occurs twice a year, typically capturing responses from over 3,500 entrepreneurs per instance to identify and explore trends, as well as deliver insights to advocates of microbusiness entrepreneurs.

GoDaddy looks at more than 20 million online microbusinesses in the U.S. who have a unique domain and active website. While these microbusinesses may be small, their impact on the U.S. economy is outsized even though they are often too informal or too new to show up in government statistics.

The rosier view: Even though they’re twice as likely to say access to capital is a business challenge, Black microentrepreneurs are more optimistic about their business outlook (87% vs. 72% for the entire sample). Black microentrepreneurs are also the most likely to have started their business because they always wanted to be their own boss (33% vs 23%).

Serious business: They’re also more serious about their entrepreneurial intentions, with a greater likelihood of securingharboring long-term valuation aspirations. Only 11% of Black microbusiness owners view their business as a side hustle, compared to 77% of White respondents.

They also take their website and eCommerce even more seriously. Close to half of all Black-owned microbusinesses accept and fulfill sales orders through their website, compared to only 28% overall, per the Venture Forward National Survey.

Venture Forward

Since 2018, GoDaddy’s Venture Forward research initiative captures the outlook, needs and demographics of microbusiness owners and quantifies the outsized economic impact of over 20 million microbusinesses, down to the zip-code level. Venture Forward publishes for download its national survey data for the US and UK, and updates its US Microbusiness Density, US Microbusiness Activity Index and US Microbusiness Industry and Commerce datasets via the Microbusiness Data Hub on a quarterly basis.