Small Business Research

Every couple of years our community contribute to what’s become the largest micro and small business research survey of it’s kind. The results provide valuable data for Government, industry and the media and help ensure we give the right support to our members.

Small Business Research Survey

Highlights from the last survey reveal that 86% of micro business owners are happy in their work and are getting happier.

Along with a sense of flexibility and independence, they enjoy incomes higher than Australian averages and feel increasingly enthusiastic about their businesses.

In fact, 90% of the business owners surveyed would not seriously consider working for someone else, even in a highly lucrative and suitable office job!

Dwnload an infographic summary of the 2012-2013 small business research


Seven key findings:

Having run the survey since 2008, we’re able to track trends closely and monitor how our community is evolving. Here’s what we can tell you:

  1. We’re experienced. Of the 1,000+ survey participants, 80% fell into the 25-54 age bracket, with 46% in the 40-54 range.
  2. We’re established. 51% have been in business for more than 3 years (37% for 5+ years and 14% for 3-5 years).
  3. We’re doing okay financially. 24% of participants are in households with incomes $150k+ (compared to around 6% of the general population) and 18% earn more than $100k (compared to around 4% of the general population). That said, the constant battle of finding new clients/customers was still identified as the biggest challenge.
  4. We work from home, solo. Around 75% operate from a home base and do so as a lifestyle choice. Two thirds of us are the only person working in the business. 51% of us do not have children living at home with us.
  5. Most of us sell services. Over 60% sell services only (up 8% since 2010), versus 12% selling products only. The remainder sell both.
  6. We talk to each other. While online social networking is gaining popularity over offline networking – preferred by 11% in 2008, 16% in 2010 and 26% in 2012 – traditional word-of-mouth and repeat business continue to be the most effective source of new business.
  7. We’re a happy bunch. 86% of respondents are happy in their work, enjoying running their own show and getting happier over time!

Past small business research

A full copy of the 2012-2013 small business research survey is available for download to Flying Solo premium members.

To discuss any aspects of this research or the Flying Solo community, please make contact.


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