Starting A Small Business? Here are the 4 Types Americans Say They Visit Most

Cheerful small business partners in restaurant.
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When it comes to starting your own business, the options are endless. Americans love supporting local stores, but the nature of supply and demand can be risky. The Small Business Administration (SBA) released a report in 2019 that revealed that approximately 20% of small businesses fail in the first year, and another half fail by year five. Within 10 years, only a third of those startups will survive.

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One way to boost the survivability of your own business is to know which shops and services people frequent the most. GOBankingRates asked 1,000 Americans which small businesses they frequent the most. Starting with the least, these are the four most popular businesses.

4. Bookstores

As much as one might love Barnes & Noble Bookstores, there are a large number of locally owned bookstores throughout the country. These independent stores focus on supplying the needs of their individual communities. Some have even become famous due to their environment and the breadth of their book selection. Parnassus in Nashville and Second Story Books in Washington D.C. are both wonderful examples of bookstores that have both longevity and success with their customers.

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3. Pet Shops

The third most frequented small businesses are pet shops. Regardless of whether the store focuses on selling pet supplies or the pets themselves, Americans tend to shop at their local pet stores — both in person and online. Large companies like Petco and PetSmart seem to dominate the market, but there is a lot of success to be had in opening a pet shop, especially if your community needs one.

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2. Salons/Barbers

No one wants a bad hair day, let alone a bad haircut. Salons and barbershops are the second most visited small businesses. The beauty industry is a good investment since beauty is always in season. And customers tend to stick by their favorite shops, becoming loyal regulars.

1. Restaurants/Coffee Shops

It seems that the way to a person’s wallet is through their stomach, and 65% of Americans agree. The overwhelming majority of Americans said that they frequented independently owned restaurants and coffee shops the most. From an owner’s point of view though, restaurants and the like are notorious for being difficult to keep open. If you’re willing to tackle the challenge, make sure you do your research. Avoid being the sixth seafood restaurant in a single block and instead look for gaps in the market you could fill.

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