Small-business owners reported nearly unanimously that they are expecting to grow in 2013, and along with that growth will come additional hiring needs, according to a survey of more than 600 small-business owners released by Ontraport, a provider of a business and marketing automation platform.
The survey, which was conducted across a broad cross section of small businesses, including restaurants, information marketers, retail outlets and financial services, found almost 60 percent of small businesses are expecting to add employees in 2013; however, more than 40 percent said they felt that financing is more difficult to secure now than it was in the past. Even though financing pressures are one of the top areas of stress for small-business owners, 60 percent of those surveyed said they will not be looking for any financing in 2013.
“Small business needs to start growing again before we finally see strong growth in the overall economy. Small-business growth will translate into more hiring, increased needs for commercial real estate, capital expenditures and an increase in borrowing,” Sunovis Financial President Terry Robinson said in a statement. "The economic recovery in the U.S. will in part depend on small-business recovery. Our company mission is to help small businesses."
According to the report, more than one-third of those surveyed would take more time for themselves if given an extra hour each day. Despite the fact that 42 percent of small-business owners started their own business as a means to pursue their passion, many of them are now looking for more personal time.
However, a recent report from the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) was less positive, finding small-business owner confidence did not rebound in December, according to the Small Business Optimism Index. While owner optimism crept up slightly over November’s historically low report, the reading was still the second lowest since March 2010.
The report said December’s poor report resulted largely from a deterioration of labor market components, and the surprising percentage of owners who still expect business conditions to worsen in the next six months. Seventy percent of owners surveyed characterized the current period as a bad time to expand, while one in four of them cited political uncertainty as the top reason. Taxes (23 percent) and regulations (21 percent) rank as the top two business problems, with “poor sales” as a close third (19 percent).
“The January survey results will be far more enlightening about how the sector views the deal—higher taxes and minimal spending cuts may not be a panacea,” NFIB Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg said in a statement. “And let’s not forget what is looming on the horizon: a debate over the debt limit and a regulatory avalanche of historic proportions about to spill out into the country. Happy New Year.”