The Best and Worst Metro Areas for Women-Owned Businesses

February 23, 2016

10:35 am

Did you know that women-owned businesses account for nearly one third of all privately held companies in the U.S? Did you know that women-owned businesses are growing 1.5 times faster than the national average? Did you know that while March may be Women’s History Month, we should really celebrate and promote women entrepreneurs year-round?

WalletHub has done their part to help women business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs by analyzing and compiling which metro areas are the best for women-owned businesses and which are the worst.

Their 2016’s Best & Worst Metro Areas for Women-Owned Businesses compared the 100 largest metropolitan statistical areas, or MSAs, across these 10 key metrics:

  • Overall New Business Friendliness (WalletHub “Start a Business” Ranking)
  • Percentage of Women-Owned Businesses
  • Average Percentage Growth of Women-Owned Businesses (2012 vs. 2007)
  • Percentage of Employees in Women-Owned Businesses
  • Average Revenue of Women-Owned Businesses
  • Average Revenue Growth of Women-Owned Businesses (2012 vs. 2007)
  • Industry Variety for Women-Owned Firms
  • Presence of Small Business Administration’s Women’s Business Centers
  • WalletHub “Working Moms” Ranking
  • WalletHub “Gender Inequality” Ranking

Based on the total combined scores from these metrics, it was determined that the best metro area for women-owned businesses is currently Nashville, TN, which scored a 70.04 out of 100. At the bottom of the list was San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA, which scored a disappointing 31.26.

The results were somewhat surprising. Here is the list of the top 10 and bottom 10 metro areas for women-owned entrepreneurs, and it’s probably not what you’d expect:

Best Metro Areas for Women-Owned Businesses Worst Metro Areas for Women-Owned Businesses
1 Nashville, TN 91 Portland, OR
2 Chattanooga, TN 92 San Diego, CA
3 Columbus, OH 93 Scranton, PA
4 Memphis, TN 94 Provo, UT
5 Milwaukee, WI 95 North Port, FL
6 Rochester, NY 96 Pittsburgh, PA
7 Kansas City, MO 97 Columbia, SC
8 Spokane, WA 98 Greenville, SC
9 Greensboro, NC 99 Oxnard, CA
10 Honolulu, HI 100 San Jose, CA

Now those rankings were based on combined totals across all metrics. Here are a few highlighted cities from the individual metrics:

  • Highest Overall New Business Friendliness – Tulsa, OK
  • Highest % of Women-Owned Businesses – Colorado Springs, CO
  • Highest Average % Growth of Women-Owned Businesses – Stockton-Lodi, CA
  • Highest % of Employees in Women-Owned Businesses – McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, TX
  • Highest Average Revenue of Women-Owned Businesses – Fresno, CA
  • Most Industry Variety for Women-Owned Firms – Salt Lake City, UT
  • Highest WalletHub ‘Working Moms’ Ranking – Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI
  • Highest WalletHub ‘Gender Inequality’ Ranking – Honalulu, HI

This map provides a visual of where the best and worst scoring MSAs are located throughout the United States.

Women-owned businesses pull in annual revenues of$1.5 trillion and provide jobs to roughly eight million workers according to an American Express OPEN-commissioned report. The reality is, whether some people want to admit it or not, that women entrepreneurs have and will continue to have a huge impact on our country’s economy.

Did you like this article?

Get more delivered to your inbox just like it!

Sorry about that. Try these articles instead!

Kristin is an aspiring entrepreneur who is enthusiastically navigating her way through the DC startup space. She has an unending passion for learning and is never satisfied with the status quo. During the day she is an ops, biz dev, and marketing maven for Fission Strategy

Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)
Startup_Mixology_300x250