CNBC and SurveyMonkey Release Latest Small Business Survey Results

Q2 2019 Survey Finds Uptick in Small Business Hiring, Revenue, and Overall Expectations

ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J. and SAN MATEO, CA, May 8, 2019 – CNBC, First in Business Worldwide, and SurveyMonkey (Nasdaq: SVMK), a leading global survey software company, today announced the results of their quarterly CNBC/SurveyMonkey Small Business Survey.

Each quarter, CNBC and SurveyMonkey poll over 2,000 small business owners aiming to measure the vitality of the American economy as well as the view from Main Street on jobs, taxes and other hot topics. In addition to measuring small business confidence nationwide, the large sample size gives CNBC the power to uncover trends by geographic region and among specific small business cohorts.

Key findings from the Q2 2019 CNBC/SurveyMonkey Small Business Survey include:

  • 56% of respondents say current business conditions are “good,” compared to 52% in Q1 2019. Additionally, 60% of small business owners expect an increase in revenues, up from 57% in Q1 and 31% expect an increase in full-time employee numbers, up from 28% in Q1. Together, these three factors impact our small business confidence index score, which increased slightly from 58 to 59 this quarter.
  • Still, the overall confidence index is tempered by the diminishing positive impact of tax policy changes. Only 28% of small business owners expect changes in tax policy to have a positive effect on their businesses over the next 12 months, down from 31% in Q1 and 44% a year ago (Q2 2018).
  • 52% of small business owners claim it’s harder to find qualified individuals to hire now compared to a year ago. For businesses with more than 50 employees, 63% of owners believe it’s harder to find qualified hires.
  • 44% of companies with 50+ employees anticipate that over the next year the cost of labor will increase at a faster rate than the cost of raw materials or the cost of capital. That indicates companies anticipate raising wages to fill their open positions.
  • 26% of small business owners say they’ve advertised on Facebook within the past few months – virtually the same as one year ago, despite issues faced by the company. Some 68% of small business owners who have ever purchased ads on Facebook say they’ll either spend even more in the coming months (18%) or keep their Facebook ad spending at the same clip in the coming months.

“Across a number of key fronts, small business owners’ expectations are rosier this quarter, adding to the evidence that we’re in the midst of a hot economy,” said Jon Cohen, chief research officer at SurveyMonkey. “At the same time, the robust optimism we’ve seen among small business owners for tax policy improvements has faded as partisan rancor has increased in Washington, keeping the overall index in check.”

CNBC Small Business Reporter Kate Rogers will reveal the results of the CNBC/SurveyMonkey Small Business Survey today, Wednesday, May 8th throughout CNBC’s Business Day programming. For more information on the survey including the full results and methodology and in-depth articles, go to:

SurveyMonkey created a unique Small Business Confidence Index (SBCI), which is a 100-point score based on responses to eight key questions. The index is calculated on a scale from 0–100 and is based on the responses to eight key questions. A zero indicates no confidence, and a score of 100 indicates perfect confidence. The second quarter of 2019′s SBCI has increased from an overall value of 58 to 59, indicating that small business owners are still more optimistic than pessimistic about the direction their business will go in the next 12 months.

The CNBC/SurveyMonkey Small Business Survey was conducted using SurveyMonkey’s online platform from April 15 – April 22, 2019 among a national sample of 2,100 self-identified small business owners ages 18 and up. Respondents for this survey were selected from more than two million people who take surveys on the SurveyMonkey platform each day. The modeled error estimate for this survey is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

Data for this quarter have been weighted to be representative of small business owners nationally, according to business characteristics from the Small Business Administration’s 2013 Statistics of U.S. Businesses and owner characteristics from the Census Bureau’s 2012 Survey of Business Owners.

*CNBC/SurveyMonkey additionally surveyed 10,253 individuals who do not own small businesses. Data for questions asked of the general population have been weighted for age, race, sex, education, and geography using the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey to reflect the demographic composition of the United States age 18 and over.

For more information contact:
Jennifer Dauble

Sandra Gharib

About CNBC:

With CNBC in the U.S., CNBC in Asia Pacific, CNBC in Europe, Middle East and Africa, and CNBC World, CNBC is the recognized world leader in business news and provides real-time financial market coverage and business information to 410 million homes worldwide, including more than 90 million households in the United States and Canada. CNBC also provides daily business updates to 400 million households across China. The network’s 15 live hours a day of business programming in North America (weekdays from 4:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. ET) is produced at CNBC’s global headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., and includes reports from CNBC News bureaus worldwide. CNBC at night features a mix of new reality programming, CNBC’s highly successful series produced exclusively for CNBC and a number of distinctive in-house documentaries.

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About SurveyMonkey:

SurveyMonkey is a leading global survey software company on a mission to power the curious. The company’s People Powered Data platform empowers over 17 million active users to measure and understand feedback from employees, customers, website and app users, and the market. SurveyMonkey’s products, enterprise solutions and integrations enable 345,000+ organizations to solve daily challenges, from delivering better customer experiences to increasing employee retention. With SurveyMonkey, organizations around the world can transform feedback into business intelligence that drives growth and innovation.