Map of the United States

Location. Location. Location.

Commonly one of the top factors when buying a home, location can also be an important consideration when determining where to set up shop for your business. The location – namely, the state you select for your company – could have great implications on things like ease of getting started and how much you’ll shell out in taxes every year.

Whether you’re trying to decide where to establish your business, or you’re simply curious about how your location stacks up to the others, there’s a large amount of data showing which states are best for biz.

Let’s take a look to determine which states are the friendliest for small biz based on a few key factors according to’s Small Business Friendliness Survey of over 12k small business owners (SBOs) in partnership with the Ewing Marion Kaufman Foundation.

Best States for Starting a Business

Whether you’re getting started or you’re considering expanding across state lines, you may be interested in these five states where SBOs say it was easiest to set up shop. Each links back to the state’s official government website on starting a business.

Best States for Business Regulations

Here are the states where SBOs say you’re less likely to be driven insane by government rules and regulations regarding business which includes things like licensing requirements and filing taxes. These link to the government pages with more information on each state’s regulatory compliance.

Best States for Hiring

As your business continues to grow and expand, the ease of hiring and retaining talent could become a key factor to your success. Here are the states where SBOs say you will have the least hassle with hiring. Included are links to the employment and workforce commissions for each state.

Best States for Training and Networking

Want to learn from and connect with other local business owners? Here are the states SBOs say are best for finding local training and networking programs. Included are links to various LinkedInSM groups where you can connect with other SBOs and find out about offline networking events, referrals, and educational opportunities.

Best States for Taxes

Taxes are a big concern for small business. The Small Business Tax Index of 2014 by the Chief Economist of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council looks at 21 different tax measurements to determine best (and worst) tax systems that affect businesses. Be sure to do your research to understand which taxes apply to you.

If you want to ensure that your company, your employees, and your customers get the best of all worlds when it comes to taxes, here are the states for you. Included are links to the government pages for each state’s tax systems.

Pulling it all Together

There are a number of factors to consider when starting or expanding your business, and location should be high on that list.

While there are states listed multiple times above that seem to emerge as the “friendliest” for small biz, one size does not fit all; some factors, like certain taxes, may not pertain to you or your industry.

Remain focused on your needs by starting with a list of the factors that impact your business the most, and cross-reference it with the above research to determine the location that’s right for you.

Capital One does not provide, endorse, nor guarantee any third-party product, service, information or recommendation listed above. The third parties listed are not affiliated with Capital One and are solely responsible for their products and services. All trademarks are the property of their respective owners.