September 11, 2020
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us census bureau small business pulse

Slowly but surely, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic response on American small businesses is weakening.

According to the latest results of the US Census Bureau Small Business Pulse Survey, fewer businesses than ever are reporting that the pandemic creates a very negative effect on their company.

Just 31.8% of small business owners surveyed by the Census Bureau say the reaction to the pandemic is having a “large negative effect” on their operations.

Wait … just?

Negative Impact of Pandemic on Small Business is Weakening

Sure, that figure is still too high for anyone’s liking. And there are still thousands of small businesses reeling from the harshest business restrictions imposed by some states. Restaurants, bars, hotels, and gyms and fitness centers are likely those indicating the pandemic is still having a harsh impact on business.

These businesses truly need a helping hand or two. So, support them at the local level whenever you get a chance.

But let’s look at the bigger picture for a second.

For starters, this year has seemed unending for many small businesses across the U.S. And as we all progress in the pandemic response, we start to see signs like this that things are returning more to the normal we all experienced at the beginning of 2020, when coronavirus wasn’t yet a household name, than it was in the Springtime.

That figure is nearly a full 6% lower than it was back at the end of June when the Census Bureau asked small businesses the same question. And it’s way off the initial responses – by almost 20% – it got back at the end of April when 51.4% said it had a large negative effect.

Rather than having a large negative effect, more businesses are saying the pandemic response is having only a moderately negative effect or little or no effect at all. That can be said for 61.4% of all the small business owners surveyed.

We see these figures trending in the right direction as most states begin easing restrictions they had in place on businesses, especially in the industries where small businesses generally thrive.

And as more consumers begin to feel safer to leave their homes and get back to regular settings both at work and socially, we should expect these figures to keep moving in a positive direction. The more states relax or remove any restrictions on business activity in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the more we’ll likely see the figures in this survey trend positively.

Adapting Your Business

In addition to getting beyond the restrictions put in place on business operations the further we get from the start of the pandemic, the more options small businesses are offered on how to adjust to the climate.

Every week we’re learning about new technologies and reading inspirational stories on how small businesses across the U.S. are coping with the pandemic.

And as you can see from these latest survey results, the pandemic is actually having a positive effect on their business.

US Census Small Business Pulse – September 10 Results

The US Census Small Business Pulse Survey isn’t some random or politicized poll. Real small business owners are surveyed on a weekly basis. Respondents are chosen from the 2018 Business Register and eligible businesses need to have payroll between 1 and 499 employees.

Survey results are published weekly on a Thursday.



This article, “Negative Impact of Pandemic on Small Business is Weakening” was first published on Small Business Trends