2016’s Best Places for Women Entrepreneurs

Last year, GoodCall ranked 2015’s best places for women entrepreneurs. Now, we’re updating our rankings for 2016 – with help from leading experts in women’s entrepreneurship and input from women business-owners themselves. We ranked nearly 400 MSAs (metropolitan statistical areas) in 4 categories to determine which areas are best overall for women entrepreneurs. The top 5 places for women entrepreneurs in 2016 are 1. Victoria, TX; 2. Bismarck, ND; 3. Monroe, LA; 4. Laredo, TX and 5. Greeley, CO.

See our full rankings and methodology, plus data on women-owned businesses in 2016 and interviews with leading women entrepreneurs, below.

  • Skip to Methodology to learn more about our ranking methodology and the sources we used.
  • Skip to Full Rankings to see where each area ranks and data for each metropolitan statistical area.
  • Skip to Best in Category Awards to see the top cities within each metric.
  • Skip to Women Business Owners Weigh-In to hear what it’s like to be a female entrepreneur in different parts of the country.
  • Skip to Badges to copy a 2016 Best Place for Women Entrepreneurs badge for your website.

Women-Owned Businesses in 2016

In our 2015 rankings, we wrote that “it’s never been a better time to be a woman entrepreneur.” The state of women’s entrepreneurship in 2016? Even more positive. According to the 2016 State of Women-Owned Businesses report, commissioned by American Express OPEN, there are more than 11.3 million women-owned businesses today – and they’re continuing to grow.


To determine the best places for women entrepreneurs in 2016, GoodCall evaluated 381 metropolitan statistical areas on the following 4 metrics and then assigned them an overall GoodCall Score:

2016’s Best Places for Women Entrepreneurs

To see the full rankings, click here.

Best in Category Awards

In addition to overall rankings, we ranked the top 10 places in each of our 4 metrics:

metric banner

Women Business Owners Weigh-In

Click on the head shots below to see what these women entrepreneurs love about owning a business in their city, and the resources they rely on the most:


Women Entrepreneur Badge
Is your city one of the top places for women entrepreneurs? Congrats! If you’d like to embed GoodCall’s 2016 Best Place for Women Entrepreneurs badge on your website, simply copy and paste the following code:

<a href=”https://www.goodcall.com/data-center/2016-best-places-women-entrepreneurs/”>
<img src=”https://goodcallwp.s3.amazonaws.com/uploads/sites/3/2016/09/Women-Entrepreneur-Badge.jpg” alt=”GoodCall Women Entrepreneur Badge” width=”350″ height=”250″ border=”0″ /></a>

Full Methodology

Networking Potential: We assigned each metropolitan statistical area (MSA) a Networking Potential score based on the number of small business owners in each area per capita. This data comes from the U.S. Census Bureau’s most recent Survey of Business Owners (2012) and represents 10% of our total score.

Business Climate: This metric represents density of women-owned businesses in each area, calculated as the number of women-owned businesses as a percentage of all businesses in that area. This data comes from the U.S. Census Bureau’s most recent Survey of Business Owners (2012) and represents 25% of our total score.

Educational Values: This metric represents the difference between male and female educational attainment in each area. We calculated this metric by finding the difference between the percentage of men 25 and older who have a bachelor’s degree or higher and the percentage of women 25 and older who have a bachelor’s degree or higher in each area. This data is based on the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2014 American Community Survey 5-year estimates and makes up 30% of our total score.

Economic Health: We took into consideration two metrics for measuring economic health, which represents 35% of our overall score:

  • GDP: The current change in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) year over year, from 2013-2014, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. This makes up 15% of our total score.
  • Unemployment: The current unemployment rate in each area, as found in the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2014 American Community Survey 5-year estimates. This makes up 20% of our total score.


GoodCall helps people make smarter decisions at every stage of life. Whether you're paying for college, applying for jobs or managing your finances, GoodCall provides the tools, resources and information you need to do it well.


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