Survey: 4 Insights About LGBTQ+ Entrepreneurs in 2023Impact Reports•Jun 12, 2023• 3 min read
In honor of Pride Month, Hello Alice surveyed nearly 600 LGBTQ+ small business owners to learn more about the opportunities and challenges they’re currently facing. The results show that the LGBTQ+ entrepreneurial community has maintained a strong, steady trajectory of growth and success in the past few years, despite challenges universal to small business owners, like the lingering effects of the pandemic and inflation, and challenges that are unique to the community, such as a recent uptick in discriminatory legislation.
Published in partnership with Startout, an organization that accelerates the growth of the LGBTQ+ entrepreneurial community to drive its economic empowerment through curated access to resources, expert support, and engagement, this research illustrates and expands upon these key findings to illustrate the solutions that address the LGBTQ+ small business community’s needs. The report also highlights the powerful sentiments of owners across the country, underscoring the importance of supporting LGBTQ+ small businesses not just during Pride month, but all year long.
The survey analysis has four key findings:
1. LGBTQ+ owners are ready to scale, despite economic conditions.
There is a demonstrated desire for expansion and growth among LGBTQ+ small businesses who have already established a strong foundation. Nearly 40% of respondents said their greatest business challenge right now is growing their business or building awareness for their business.
2. Staying agile to learn new skills is a key priority for LGBTQ+ owners.
LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs are balancing learning with execution every day. 80% are seeking out educational content online to grow their skills, and 70% reported they’re learning through on-the-job experience.
3. Access to capital presents a hurdle in the path to financing for LGBTQ+ businesses.
In order to grow, LGBTQ+ owners need financing, and this effort can be a significant undertaking. 87% of respondents said they’re planning to apply for financing in 2023, and 36% said raising capital is their biggest challenge right now.
4. LGBTQ+ small business owners are resolute in the face of discriminatory legislation.
While LGBTQ+ owners used words like “frightening”, “concerning” and “heavy” to describe the impact of increasing anti-LGBTQ+ legislation, 45% said they had not felt a direct impact on their bottom line, and many expressed that their main concern in the face of this discrimination is the wellbeing of their teams and customers.
2023 Resources for LGBTQ+ small business owners
Share the following resources with LGBTQ+ small business owners in your network. Each resource addresses the key challenges voiced in this survey by LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs.
Business Health Score
Financially fit companies provide the best conditions for small business success. With Hello Alice’s Business Health Score, you can monitor your progress, identify potential areas of opportunity, and get more personalized support on your path to success.
If you haven’t already taken our business health self-assessment, it’s a great place to start! Get the clarity you need to take control of your business’ future.
Small Business Funding Center
Access to capital ensures owners are able to fund growth, pursue opportunities, and respond to unforeseen challenges. Hello Alice’s Small Business Funding Center connects owners with the full continuum of capital — including loans, financing, and credit cards — they need to run their businesses.
When small businesses succeed, everyone benefits. Join us in shifting your focus forward in 2023 by leaning into your small business dreams. In partnership with the Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN) and with funding from Etsy and Progressive, Hello Alice is awarding small business owners between $5,000 and $25,000 in grants to help accelerate their growth. To be eligible, a business must have less than $1M in annual revenue, a commitment to their customers and community, and a clear plan to use the grant funds. Apply now.
Funding and Financial Literacy Education
Hello Alice offers live events, workshops, accelerators, and digital learning experiences to help entrepreneurs level up and succeed. The following step-by-step guides can help LGBTQ+ owners learn funding strategies and build financial literacy skills:
- Organize Your Finances
- Boost Your Personal Credit Score
- Choose the Right Capital
- Secure a Loan From a Nonprofit Microlender
- Write a Winning Grant Application
- Improve Your Credit Utilization Ratio
- How a Secured Card Can Support Your Small Business
About Hello Alice
A Latina-owned company founded by Carolyn Rodz and Elizabeth Gore, Hello Alice (helloalice.com) is a free, multichannel platform that helps businesses grow. We believe in business for all by providing access to all owners, including women, people of color, military-connected individuals, the LGBTQ+ community, persons with disabilities, and every American with an entrepreneurial spirit.