Women microbusiness owners up 33% in the UK and 10% in US, narrowing the gender gap

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Data Forward

Women microbusiness owners up 33% in the UK and 10% in US, narrowing the gender gap

The big fact

The number of women-owned microbusinesses has continued to increase in both the U.S. and U.K. according to the GoDaddy Venture Forward U.S. National Survey conducted in August 2023 (n=3,525). As a result, the gender gap narrowed. More than half (51%) of microbusiness owners in the U.S. are women, increasing by 10% in the last two years, and up 25% relative to where it started in 2019. And 42% of microbusiness owners in the U.K. are women, up 33% in the last two years.

Gender parity in business growth could boost the global GDP (Gross Domestic Product) by as much as 2 to 3% ($2 trillion) and generate 288 to 433 million jobs, according to a Citi analysis.

Black women are the fastest-growing group of entrepreneurs

Of the microbusinesses owned by a Black entrepreneur, over half in the U.S. (68%) and U.K. (60%) are Black women, according to GoDaddy’s Venture Forward research initiative. Since 2020, the share of Black women-owned businesses out of all microbusinesses grew 70%, making them the fastest growing demographic.

Click here to learn more about the growth of Black women microbusiness owners.

Business size doesn’t matter

Women are narrowing the gender gap with smaller businesses and less funds.

  • In the U.S., the most popular aspiration for women (40%) is to be a solopreneur and stay small.
  • For both the U.S. and U.K., women needed less capital to get started than men. In the U.S., 74% of women needed $5K or less, compared to 60% of men. In the U.K., 80% of women needed £5K or less, compared to 69% of men.

The research

GoDaddy’s Venture Forward research initiative analyzes more than 20 million online businesses with a digital presence (measured by a unique domain and an active website). Most of these businesses employ fewer than ten people, categorizing each as a microbusiness. While these microbusinesses may be small, their impact on economies is outsized even though they are often too informal or too new to show up in traditional government statistics. 

Since 2018, Venture Forward surveyed more than 36,000 small business owners with a digital presence, making it the source for microbusiness data and insights.