Microbusiness Activity Index

Developed for measuring and comparing microbusiness activity across communities, over time.

How the Index Works

Microbusinesses have an outsized impact on their local economies across the United States, and the Microbusiness Activity Index (MAI) introduces a new way to track their activity and your community’s economic outcomes.

A single online microbusiness owner is associated with an additional 6.7 jobs at the county level.

For every 1 point increase on the Index in a county, there’s:

  • An increase of 0.3% in the percentage of households earning over $60,000 in household income
  • A drop of 0.1% in the local unemployment rate

GoDaddy Venture Forward has partnered with economists at the UCLA Anderson Forecast to develop this single composite score for each city and county across United States. Scores increase or decrease quarterly in response to observed changes in the 3 subindices making up the composite, which are: Infrastructure, Participation, and Engagement.

The map to the right is a snapshot of MAI scores at the county level across the U.S. for Q2 2023. Dark teal/green counties show strength in microbusiness activity, while dark blue counties have relatively lower scores. Learn what drives microbusiness formation and growth in the original, in-depth White Paper.

UCLA Anderson Forecast logo
Color-coded map of the united states representing Microbusiness Activity index values by county from June, 2023

U.S. Index Ranking By County

Below is a snapshot of counties with a population of 500k+ based on MAI scores.

Top 5 Counties in the U.S. (pop = 500K+)

County MAI Score
Monroe County, IL 124.24
Falls Church City, VA 123.2
Hamilton County, IN 122.31
Arlington County, VA 122.29
Howard County, MD 121.55

Bottom 5 Counties in the U.S. (pop = 500K+)

County MAI Score
Kenedy County, TX 65.85
Quitman County, GA 78.0
Perry County, AL 79.68
Wheeler County, GA 80.94
Oliver County, ND 81.76
Scores last reported March 2023.

The Latest Reports

Updated quarterly, the MAI provides the most up-to-date snapshot of microbusiness health and performance. Through one score distilling over 15 signals measuring: the infrastructure in place for them to take root and thrive, the participation of local entrepreneurs in creating these ventures, and the engagement levels of the local entrepreneurs with their target markets.

The data is available freely for download above and analyzed quarterly in reports from UCLA Anderson Forecast at the city, county and state-level, for actionable insights for policymakers.


The components of the Microbusiness Activity Index


How ready is your area in terms of physical and intellectual infrastructure needed to access and use the internet?


What is the number of GoDaddy online microbusinesses created and run by residents in the area?


How active are the websites created in each community?

Microbusiness Index

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