Small Business Startup Sentiment is Steady, as Demographic Mix Shifts

By: Michael Alston for Franchise Insights

July 10, 2024 – Over 59% of aspiring business owners either agree or strongly agree that “now is a good time to start a business,” with optimism about conditions ahead. In the June 2024 survey,  over 82.7% of respondents see conditions for business and franchise startups “the same or better in three months. 

Of this month’s respondents, 50.6% of entrepreneurs planned their startups within the next three months, up slightly from 49.4% last month. Further, 6% of entrepreneurs surveyed say they are “more or much more likely to launch their startups than three months ago.” compiles monthly the Small Business Startup Sentiment Index™ (SSI) of individuals who have recently inquired about businesses for sale. The most recent Startup Sentiment Index™ survey was conducted June 20-30, 2024. 

Generation-X and Full-Time Workers Make up Record Shares of Respondents.

Additional highlights:

  • Future business conditions: Reversing a multi-year downtrend in sentiment about future business conditions, about 83% of respondents see conditions no worse – staying the same or getting better in three months– with 65.4% seeing conditions “about the same” as now, which they view as good. This month only 17.3% see conditions getting worse or much worse..
  • Access to funding: The percentage of entrepreneurs concerned about finding  adequate funding rose to 66.7%, and those who see funding “harder or much harder” to obtain in the next three months grew to 23.5% of respondents. But “political changes” again ranked third among concerns (as in May) and up from fifth in April.
  • Demographics: Of the survey respondents, a record  61.7% are currently employed full-time, topping the previous record of 58.6% seen in October 2021, and up from a four-year low of 36.9% for full-time workers just three months ago. Another 12.3% of respondents were current business owners seeking an additional or replacement business. Freelancers and consultants were 19.8%, followed by part-timers at 6.2%, whose share had been significantly higher since October 2023. The Gen-X cohort reached a record 63.9% of respondents, and Millennials were 18.1%. Baby Boomers slid to 13.9% in May, and Gen-Z were 4.2% of respondents.

It remains to be seen whether these record shares for Gen-X and full-time workers among franchise-seekers are a seasonal fluctuation, or a new trend based on changes in the economy and employment.

Download a copy of the latest Small Business Startup Sentiment report here. See excerpts from prior SSI™ surveys and subscribe to receive the Small Business Startup Sentiment Index™ monthly report when it is released.

The Small Business Startup Sentiment Index™ is based on a monthly survey of individuals who have recently inquired about businesses or franchises for sale on the FranchiseVentures lead generation platform.

FranchiseVentures is the leading franchise lead-generation platform for potential franchisees to thousands of growing franchise systems in the United States and Canada. Its franchise lead generation brands include, Franchise Solutions, Franchise Gator, Franchise Opportunities, Franchise For Sale, and, and together they provide the largest aggregation of prospective franchise buyers in the U.S.

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Published on Tuesday, July 9th, 2024.

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