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What Are the Fastest-Growing Small Businesses in America?

Roie Raitses

If you want to build one of the fastest-growing small businesses in America, the good news is there is no shortage of selection.

From ecommerce to technology to care services, there are numerous industries that are growing across the country and ripe for many American entrepreneurs.

If you’re looking to open a high-growth small business, check out these boom markets. 

11 Leading Growth Industries

Whether you’re looking to purchase an existing company, fund a startup or create unique products and services, the industry you choose to pursue can make or break your success.

Here are some of the fastest-growing business opportunities for veteran small business owners and newcomers alike.

1. Renewable Energy 

With more people accepting the need for sustainable practices and infrastructure, renewable energy is one of the fast-growing businesses in America. Issues concerning the environment have quickly become prominent in public conversation, and both government leaders and business owners have taken note.

Fortunately, this newfound concern is likely to create an economic boon for entrepreneurs in solar, wind, hydro and other renewable energy industries. Already, renewable energy has been showing admirable growth worldwide, which is likely to increase even more in coming years. 

In fact, the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions notes that renewable energy is the fastest-growing energy source across the U.S. and is projected to see a 45% rise globally by 2040.

2. Mining and Industry Support Activities

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, both metal ore mining and mining support services are expected to be some of the fastest-growing sectors for wages and employment as well as output.

Mining support services includes companies performing exploration, core samplings and site observations on a contract or fee basis. 

Oil and gas extraction is another rapidly growing industry, anticipated to experience an approximate 185% change in output from 2019-2029.

Occupations in these fields can include service unit operators, rotary drill operators, derrick operators, roustabouts and supervisors.

Yellow background with image of a blue stethoscope and an upward-facing arrow behind it.

3. Outpatient Care 

In the health care and social assistance field, outpatient care centers are expected to be another fast-growing business opportunity, expected to see a whopping 1,239.6% hike in wage and salary employment, according to the BLS. Technological changes, better access to insurance and cost-cutting strategies are leading to increased use and demand of outpatient centers.

Examples of outpatient care centers include:

  • Medical group practices
  • Wellness centers
  • Urgent care clinics
  • Drug or alcohol rehabilitation centers

4. Family Care Services

As you’re researching the best industries to start a business, consider this option. Falling under the social services umbrella, individual and family care services is another area that is expected to experience rapid growth. In fact, the BLS noted that change in wage and salary employment is expected to skyrocket 1,052.6% from 2019-2029.

Examples of careers that could fall under this sector include the following:

  • Life coach
  • Senior care service provider
  • Newborn care specialist
  • Daycare provider
  • In-home care provider
  • Therapist or mental health counselor
  • Parent support specialist
  • Pregnancy, delivery or post-pregnancy support specialist (e.g., doula, lactation consultant)

5. Freelance Professional Services

If you want to enjoy increased freedom and build one of the fastest-growing small companies, then consider your own freelance business, whether in pet care, project management or something in between.

The service sector is among one of the fastest-growing industries to start a business in. In particular, the number of freelance workers are growing, which is especially appealing to the millennial generation, parents who want to stay at home or set their hours and businesses within the creative industries.

Some of the most appealing benefits of freelance work include being able to work remotely, set your work hours and create a business without necessarily needing additional employees.

Another benefit is that freelancing is a viable career option for people from all educational and career backgrounds:

  • Writers
  • Tutors
  • Personal chefs
  • Graphic artists
  • Photographers
  • Programmers
  • Corporate trainers
  • Translators
  • Personal fitness coaches
  • Web developers
  • Project consultants

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6. Specialty Trades

When considering what is the fastest-growing business, it can be easy to focus on new, technologically dependent industries that may not have existed in past generations. However, one of the most lucrative fields is one that has been consistently profitable for decades. That field is specialty trades:

  • Electrical work
  • Plumbing
  • Painting
  • Carpentry
  • Roofing 
  • Engineering
  • Drywall installation
  • Construction site management

Overall, these trades are common in most construction projects, both residential and non-residential. The specialty trades industry is experiencing employment growth, with more than 4.7 million workers, as of December 2020.

7. Medical Cannabis 

Having one of the fastest-growing small businesses could be as easy as embracing the shifting political tide. An increasing number of states are moving to legalize the use of medicinal and recreational cannabis, and as a result, the cannabis agribusiness is booming.

In the U.S., 35 states and Washington, D.C., have made medical marijuana legal. Annual sales of medical cannabis are projected to reach $13.1 billion by 2025, while legal sales of cannabis overall were expected to reach $30 billion.

8. Gaming and Virtual Reality

Another of the fastest-growing businesses is in the gaming realm. The world of gaming has always been a lucrative sector of the entertainment industry but has grown significantly since the emergence of virtual and augmented reality.

Revenue from virtual reality gaming in the U.S. has grown steadily over the last few years and is projected to reach $2 billion this year, while the video gaming industry as a whole is expected to be worth $200 billion by 2023.

In addition to its popularity in gaming, virtual reality can be used for applications in retail, education, medicine and employment training.

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9. Information-Technology Security

Data breaches are scary ordeals, but with the right innovations, you could turn these growing concerns into one of the fastest-growing small business opportunities in the country.

In our current era of big data, companies of all sizes are living in fear of the legal and fiscal ramifications of data breaches. Regardless of whether a breach occurs on a company-wide or individual level, the outcomes can be incredibly costly, from losing critical, classified data to falling victim to the rising rates of identity theft.

For this reason, small and large businesses alike (along with governments and individuals) are upping their cybersecurity budgets. According to the BLS, the job outlook for information security analysts is projected to grow at a much-faster-than-average pace between 2019-2029, 31% specifically.

10. Ecommerce 

There’s no better place for a growing small business to thrive than the Internet. From social media influencers to the collection and analysis of data, the Internet has presented countless opportunities for businesses and individuals to find new ways to make a profit.

With fewer people wanting to visit brick-and-mortar retailers during a busy holiday season, and more people looking for the best deal on products and services, online businesses have grown exponentially. Ecommerce, in particular, is an exciting sector that is set to produce $4.5 trillion by 2021.

Some buzzworthy statistics regarding the industry include the fact that the average American shopper now spends approximately 36% of their shopping budget online, and millennial consumers now make over half their purchases online.

There are lots of benefits to embracing the ecommerce trend, including lower operational costs and the potential to use social media and email as a marketing tool. Although some businesses exclusively provide products and services on the Internet, businesses can also use the web as a tool to supplement in-person sales

If you are looking at the fastest-growing businesses to start, then the world of online sales is not one to be ignored.

11. In-Home Personal Care Services

While the career outlook for hairstylists and barbers is expected to decline over the 2019-2029 decade, according to the BLS, the growth rate for manicurists, massage therapists and skincare specialists is expected to be much faster than average.

More and more consumers want convenience, and having someone come to you offers that. What’s more, with the pandemic looming heavy, many are choosing to avoid unnecessary outings but still want to enjoy small pleasures, such as a professional massage, pedicure or haircut. Reasons such as social distancing measures and restrictions on establishments will likely cause in-home personal care services to be in greater demand in 2021.

If you have a cosmetology skill you’ve mastered or have contacts who might want to partner with you on this venture, consider becoming an owner of a personal care company that travels to your clients’ locations.

What Is the Best Sector for You to Start a Business?

The fastest-growing small businesses find success not because they are led by owners who were smarter or luckier than the average entrepreneur, but because they were willing to take advantage of opportunities instead of waiting for the perfect time to get started.

Too many entrepreneurs have yet to tap into the potential presented by recent technological advancements, changing demographics and the shifting priorities of Americans. Whether you want to act upon your lifelong dream of working with children, work at home through a freelancing career or become the next cybersecurity giant, fear and inaction are the only things limiting your success.

Ultimately, starting a new business can feel daunting and challenging, but it’s important to remember that there are some quickly growing industries that offer entrepreneurs from all backgrounds the opportunity to find success and build lucrative businesses.

Roie Raitses CMO at Fast Capital 360
Roie Raitses is the co-founder and CMO of Fast Capital 360, a leading online business loan marketplace. Before this role, he was the Vice President of a wealth management firm where his passion for small business (and his mission) was born: create a simpler, easier method for business owners to find the resources they need to grow.
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