The National Small Business Association (NSBA) and its international trade arm, the Small Business Exporters Association (SBEA), today released the┬á2013 Small Business Exporting Survey.
Among the key findings: more small businesses are exporting today than just three years ago; and there has been a marked increase among non-exporters who said they would be interested in starting to export their goods and/or services from just 43 percent in 2010 to 63 percent today.
The survey shows a significant drop among non-exporters who said lack of goods or services to export was their main barrier to selling internationally. Today, their main barrier is a lack of information and an unclear understanding of where to start.
“The growth we’re seeing in small-business exporters underscores a broad change in attitude about exporting,” said NSBA Chair and past SBEA Chair, David Ickert┬áof Air Tractor, Inc. in┬áOlney, Texas. “Not only are small businesses seeing growing opportunities available to them via exporting, they increasingly view their goods and/or services as valuable in a global marketplace.”
Regarding the key challenges facing exporters, nearly half of small-business exporters spend a minimum of a few months as well as an average of 8.4 percent of their annual operating revenue preparing to export. Following such a large investment, it’s no wonder that getting paid is a significant worry for exporters and non-exporters alike.
“One of the key take-aways from this survey ought to be the imperative to make exporting more accessible for America’s small businesses,” stated NSBA President and CEO┬áTodd McCracken. “When asked about federal support, two of the top three recommendations among both exporters and non-exporters was to improve availability of information and consolidate federal agencies to provide a one-stop-shop.”