Online financial technology company Kabbage recently issued the second installment of its Small Business Recovery Report tracking US small business recovery and growth through 2022. Polling more than 550 small business leaders, the latest version of the report shows that many small businesses are closer to reaching pre-pandemic levels of operation.

The survey, which includes the smallest small businesses with fewer than 20 employees (53% of respondents), medium-sized small businesses with 21 to 100 employees (29%) and the largest small businesses with 101 to 500 employees (18%), shows a spike of small businesses reporting they’re fully open.

According to Kabbage’s findings, 85% of small businesses reported they were fully open for business in March 2021, an increase of 51% since the first Small Business Recovery Report from February 2021. Of those 85%:

  • 32% have a physical location which is now back to full operations
    • 16% have an online store as well as a physical location, which is fully open
  • 15% shifted their company online due to the crisis and are open as a result
    • One in five of all medium-sized businesses made this change
  • 22% were always online and therefore never impacted
    • The smallest small businesses had the highest response (27%)

“It’s heartening to see the pressures on small businesses are slowly easing as consumer confidence heightens and sales continue to restore, but the smallest of businesses still need our support,” says Rob Frohwein, co-founder of Kabbage, an American Express Company. “These companies have carried the brunt of the economic crisis and we can only claim recovery when they can too.”

Small businesses reported the increase of in-person transactions reached an average of 15% between February and March 2021, more than double the volume recorded between January and February 2021 (7%). Medium and large small businesses recorded a 24% and 29% increase of in-person transactions, respectively, while the smallest small businesses saw only a 5% increase.

Nearly two-thirds of all small businesses (64%) stated they’re now paying their employees’ full wages without concern, and more than half (51%) reported customer demand and new inbound business has restored to levels prior to the pandemic.