Some of the Best Cities for Small Business

Central Comm asnwers phones for small businessCNN Money recently published a poll from the  company Thumbtack . Which cities were the best for small business? Some of the answers may surprise you.

The basic categories for the poll were developed by Thumbtack which is a service where small companies can sign up on their site, and other businesses put out requests for bids on various services, and the companies can look at what services are being requested, then post a bid to provide the service.

This is a snapshot of the top cities for small business:

1. Manchester, NH

Small business owners in Manchester are pretty big fans of the city.

Manchester took the top spot in Thumbtack’s fourth annual ranking of the best and worst cities for small businesses.

“Texas cities typically dominate our top 10 list. This is the first time Manchester made it on the list,” said Jon Lieber, chief economist with Thumbtack, which connects more than a million small businesses with prospective clients.

Cities were given an overall “friendliness” score based on factors like how easy it was to start a new business and whether they’d encourage others to do the same.

Manchester business owners especially liked the help they got from city agencies and said resources were easily accessible.

A second score was based on things like tax codes, ease of hiring, regulations and licensing.

Manchester scored an “A+” in both categories.


2.  Dallas, TX

Four of the top 10 cities on Thumbtack’s list are located in Texas.

Why are small businesses sweet on the state?

“Business owners say they generally appreciate the hands-off attitude there,” said Thumbtack’s Lieber. “Compared to L.A. or New York, the cost of complying with regulations is much less in Texas.”

Dallas scored an “A+” in overall friendliness. Business owners said they liked the city’s “endless networking opportunities” as well as support from public and private sectors.

But others dinged the city on “convoluted” licensing requirements and zoning ordinances.


3. Richmond, VA

Richmond scored an “A+” across the board for ease of launching a startup, hiring and overall friendliness toward small businesses.

“Richmond is a bustling area. There are so many people to network with here,” a makeup artist in the city wrote in the Thumbtack survey.

Business owners also appreciated various free resources to help them get started.

However, some respondents said the high rents in newly constructed retail areas were becoming a big challenge for new businesses.

4. Austin, TX

The Lone Star State’s capital city has consistently been in Thumbtack’s top four cities to start a business.

Entrepreneurs gave it an “A+” for how easy it is to get a business off the ground and said networking opportunities are plentiful and taxes are low.

“Small businesses here have an upper hand right now because the community is aware and conscious of how important it is to shop local first,” a piano instructor in Austin wrote.

Another business owner said Texas makes it easy for small businesses “by not having [income] tax.”

If there’s an area for improvement, it’s this: “Filing for state licenses is like pulling teeth. Nothing is laid out and you must go on a scavenger hunt,” said the owner of a cleaning service.

5.  Knoxville, Tenn.

Knoxville gets a high grade as a place to open a business. Small business owners said the city is also an affordable place to live.

“Tennessee has no state income tax. That really helps small businesses,” said one business owner.

“It’s also very easy to get a business license in Knoxville,” wrote another respondent.”

To see the rest of the list, head on over to CNN Money and check it out.

Central Comm

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