August is National Black Business Month!
National Black Business Month traces its roots back to 2004, when two entrepreneurs, Frederick E. Jordan and John William Templeton, deemed August as a month to highlight the challenges black entrepreneurs experience with funding, operating, and sustaining businesses. The intent is to support and uplift black business owners, and focus, in part, on addressing the various systemic mechanisms that create less economic opportunities for black Americans.
According to the most recent United States Census reports, black-owned businesses account for nearly 10% of all businesses and about 30% of all minority-owned businesses. COVID has been disproportionately tough on black-owned businesses, with 41% being shuttered by April 2020 due to pandemic shut-downs. From a consumer standpoint, patronizing small businesses is a vital way of participating in the U.S. economy, and frequenting black-owned businesses in particular can help support black families, black communities and grow their representation in our nation’s overall business landscape. Other businesses can support black-owned businesses just as well as consumers can – seeking out their businesses in a B2B situation can be a great relationship that will benefit everyone involved.
These are just a small handful of examples of why supporting black-owned businesses is an important part of helping communities and economies flourish.
The interest in supporting black-owned brands and businesses surged between January and December 2020 – Google searches for “black owned businesses” increased 600% compared to the same span in 2019. In addition to using Google to search, there are other ways to find black-owned businesses to support. Below is a list of online resources to get started:
- Official Black Wall Street (obws.com) – The largest online platform for locating black businesses in 10 countries
- EatOkra.com – An app that specifically locates black-owned restaurants and food services
- IamBlackBusiness.com – a resource for consumers to locate businesses and tools to help black-owned businesses be successful