Small Business Owner / Operator Salary

The majority of Small Business Owners and Operators in the United States — nearly two in three — boast more than 10 years of experience in their profession. Salaries stretch from $26K to $152K per year, and the median is $59K annually. In the world of Small Business Owners and Operators, total cash compensation can vary between $26K and $152K. Each package generally includes bonuses and profit sharing proceeds, and in exceptional cases, those amounts can reach heights of $25K and $52K, respectively. Geographic location is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by career length. Small Business Owners and Operators who participated in the survey are largely men, dominating at 66 percent. Nearly one in three report receiving medical coverage from their employers and around one in six collect dental insurance. The majority of Small Business Owners and Operators claim high levels of job satisfaction. The data in this summary comes from the PayScale salary survey.
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$25,020 - $144,913
$25K
$59K
$140K
MEDIAN: $59,365
10%
50%
90%

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$11.66 - $75.06
$12
$25
$75
MEDIAN: $24.98
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$60K$120K$180K
Salary
$25,020 - $144,913  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $25,086  
Profit Sharing
$0.00 - $51,536  
Commission
$27.88 - $49,316  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$25,757 - $151,800  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 4 May 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 841
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$30$60$90
Hourly Rate
$11.66 - $75.06  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.49 - $4.97  
Overtime
$4.79 - $77.28  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$60K$120K$180K
Bonus
$0.00 - $25,086  
   
Commission
$27.88 - $49,316  
Profit Sharing
$0.00 - $51,536  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$25,757 - $151,800  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 4 May 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 283

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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Job Description for Small Business Owner / Operator

Small business owners and operators work in a variety of industries such as retail goods, auto repair, home inspection, and many others. Their primary duties (outside of their respective skill or trade) include managing employees, providing customer service, promoting their business, filing and documenting appropriate business accounts, and ensuring their business meets any local, state, and federal requirements. Small business owners may work from a storefront, office space, or even from their home. Depending on the type of business, trade, or service they practice, their hours can vary; however, many organizations operate during daytime hours.

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Small Business Owner / Operator Tasks

  • Oversee company operations, directing production, sales, administrative, and/or distribution activities.
  • Oversee and/or assist with personnel management, including hiring, training, and performance evaluation.
  • Oversee and/or assist with client acquisition and marketing strategies.
  • Develop and/or assist with company-wide policies, procedures, objectives, and business strategies.
  • Direct and review financial activities, measuring productivity, setting prices, and/or managing budgets.

Common Career Paths for Small Business Owner / Operator


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Though some Small Business Owners and Operators move into positions like Construction Manager (where the average salary is $74K), this progression is not the norm. With an annual salary of $70K, Construction Project Manager is the most common role for Small Business Owners and Operators to subsequently assume on their way up the ladder. Transitioning into an Office Manager role — which usually pays $39K — is also typical for Small Business Owners and Operators, though less common by comparison.

Owner / Operator Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Small Business Owner / Operator


Small Business Owners and Operators seem to exploit a large range of skills on the job. Most notably, facility with Construction Estimating and Social Media Marketing are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 22 percent and 7 percent, respectively. Those listing Cleaning as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. Bookkeeping and Sales also typically command lower compensation. Those familiar with Leadership also tend to know Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Strategic Planning.

Pay by Experience Level for Small Business Owner / Operator

Pay by Experience for a Small Business Owner / Operator has a positive trend. An entry-level Small Business Owner / Operator with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $43,000 based on 275 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. A Small Business Owner / Operator with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $51,000 based on 242 salaries. An experienced Small Business Owner / Operator which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $63,000 based on 394 salaries. A Small Business Owner / Operator with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $70,000 based on 369 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $59,567

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Oklahoma City is home to an above-average pay rate for Small Business Owners and Operators, 105 percent higher than the national average. Small Business Owners and Operators can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Houston (+68 percent), Dallas (+66 percent), Austin (+63 percent), and New York (+40 percent). Small Business Owners and Operators' salaries are heavily influenced by location — Small Business Owners and Operators in Charlotte bring in salaries that are 39 percent lower than the national average. Tampa and Memphis are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries are 28 percent lower and 16 percent lower, respectively.

Small Business Owner / Operator Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Small Business Owner / Operator?

Small Business Owner / Operator in Statesboro:
"Work Flexibility and conditions."
Pros: I like that owning my own business gives me that particular flexibility that I need or seek after. In my particular field the stress levels are extremely low but can be present from time to time. The work conditions are great and you can work, at times in your own pace; with little to no assistance.
Cons: There's really nothing bad about this job, other than when a customer cancel a order about 30 minutes prior to pick up time or is a no show.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Small Business Owner / Operator

Gender

Female
34 %
Male
66 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 175 votes.
Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
18%
5-9 years
14%
10-19 years
31%
20 years or more
35%
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Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Small Business Owner / Operator Salaries

▲17%

▲5%

National Average
$60,000

▼15%

▼28%

Skills That Affect Small Business Owner / Operator Salaries


Social Media Marketing
▲7%


National Average
$60,000

▼2%




Graphic Design
▼11%


▼14%


Bookkeeping
▼29%

Cleaning
▼35%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 175 votes.

Gender

Female
34 %
Male
66 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
18%
5-9 years
14%
10-19 years
31%
20 years or more
35%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 34%
dental benefits
Dental: 17%
vision benefits
Vision: 14%
no benefits
None: 65%
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