“Small businesses are the backbone of the economy.” Everyone has heard this statement, but what does it mean? The average layperson would not know that out of the twenty-eight million businesses in the United States over ninety-nine percent of them are considered small businesses, and eighty-eight percent of those have less than twenty employees. While these numbers show the wide net cast by small businesses, members of this group only account for over forty-four six percent of the GDP. This means that customers are using chain businesses or large corporations, for whatever the reason may be, in preference. While it may be convenient for the average consumer to use these alternatives it drastically hurts the economy and the forty-seven percent of the country that is employed by them. This series attempts to document socio-economically depressed small to medium-sized towns and the relationship between the town and their small businesses. The purpose of this series is to establish the importance of small business on small communities and how vital they are for the economic growth and stability of their town.
Final Studies are in partnership with The University of Akron and are made possible with support from Fifth Third Bank and the Robert O. and Annamae Orr Family Foundation.