6 Intriguing Statistics About Women in the Franchising Industry

Women are making big moves in the franchising world.

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By Jeff Cheatham

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

In 1987, Congress formally established the month of March as Women's History Month, a time meant for us all to celebrate the progress, accomplishments and contributions women have made over the past few decades. In addition, International Women's Day raises awareness for a world free of gender bias, discrimination, and stereotypes. This year's theme is "Break the Bias", and the hashtag #BreakTheBias is encouraged for social media posts in support and awareness of this special day across the globe.

Fortunately, women feature prominently in the franchising industry, as well as the entrepreneurial marketplace. To celebrate the achievements in these sectors, here are six intriguing statistics about women's entrepreneurial accomplishments.

1. The rise of women-owned businesses

50 years ago in 1972, the U.S. Census Bureau began tracking female entrepreneurship, which at the time was estimated to include some 400,000 businesses owned by women. The latest statistics reveal a stunning increase to 13 million female-owned businesses.

Related: Yelp Survey Finds That Women Business Owners Remain Passionate, Innovative Despite Persistent Gender Bias and Pandemic Losses

2. Franchise and small business ownership in the U.S.

According to research by Guidant Financial, it's estimated that women account for approximately 31% of all small businesses and franchise ownership in the U.S. A third of these have successfully owned and operated their businesses for 10 years or longer. Black women are starting businesses at a faster rate than any other racial group, at 17%. A full 14% of these businesses employ between 10-50 employees.

3. Comprehensive U.S. totals for female small business owners

An amazing 42% of all U.S. businesses are owned by women. These businesses employ almost 10 million workers and account for nearly $2 billion in annual revenue. It's reported that these entrepreneurs come from diverse ethnic and geographic backgrounds.

Related: These Women Leaders Are Changing Lives and Influencing Tomorrow's Industries—Right Now

4. Women's interest in franchising on the rise

According to recent data from Franchise Insights, women are now outnumbering men when it comes to seeking information about franchise ownership – especially among Gen X and Gen Y demographic groups. It's an advisable route to explore, considering that the franchising industry is particularly impressive when it comes to minding the gender pay gap. In 2021, females earned approximately 90% of their male counterparts, or 90 cents for every dollar. The overall percentage of women franchise owners has risen for five consecutive years, going back to 2016.

5. Franchise industries with the most women owners

Child service-oriented franchises lead the pack for the most female owners, at 51%. The next closest market is travel and hospitality at 43%. This is followed by fitness-related concepts (39%), while sports and rec franchises (36%) complete the top five most popular sectors.

6. Why women are a good fit for franchising

Among the leading factors that make women a good fit for franchising is the fact that they're great at organizing things ⁠— especially prioritizing key tasks and using a detail-oriented approach. Various studies have also concluded that women can think quickly on their feet and adapt to changing conditions more readily. Their fiscal conservatism and focus on scalability are two additional positives, as well as their innate ability to network and communicate with ease.

Related: 100 Women of Impact In 2021

Jeff Cheatham

Founder and CEO of Creative Content

Jeff Cheatham is the founder and CEO of Creative Content, a full-service copywriting and public relations firm. He's based in Dallas and works with multiple B2B clients and over a dozen franchise brands to develop proprietary content campaigns for lead generation and sales development programs.



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