Export Assistance for Small Businesses and Underserved Communities 
NES: Small Businesses, Underserved Communities
Learn about export assistance for small businesses and underserved communities

NES Export Assistance for Small Businesses and Underserved Communities

Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy, representing 99.7% of all U.S. firms. However, these businesses do not engage in trade at the same rate as their peers from other large economies.

This presents a missed opportunity, as companies that export on average earn higher revenues, create more jobs, and pay better wages. Ensuring equitable economic growth demands increasing U.S. exports as well as increasing the pool of exporters.

Strategies to broaden and diversify the small business exporter base, with a particular focus on small businesses from underserved communities, is a dedicated chapter in the NES. The chapter also introduces a central objective of advancing equity through enhanced accessibility and assistance, including place-based investments into programs and services.

Other chapter highlights include:

  • Identifying export-capable and export-ready companies
  • Enhancing awareness and accessibility of export resources
  • Expanding the use of trade promotion tools and services
  • Facilitating access to export financing programs
  • Fostering intellectual property-savvy small businesses
  • Modernizing resource delivery
  • Ensuring U.S. trade agreements and dialogues support small and medium size enterprises
  • Deepening federal, state, and local coordination
  • Leveraging U.S. emerging technologies and innovations to solve global development challenges.

Read the full report

National Export Strategy Report
Logo for the Global Diversity Export Initiative with US Commercial Service Logo

ITA's Global Diversity Export Initiative

The U.S. Commercial Service features export solutions for minority-owned businesses and underserved communities leveraging our global network and the export assistance value chain of the International Trade Administration. Explore events, tools, and resources to help entrepreneurs and executives accelerate their exporting journey.

Resources for Small Businesses and Underserved Communities

Community Navigator Pilot Program
Funded by the American Rescue Plan, this Small Business Administration program strengthens outreach to businesses in underserved communities by partnering with organizations that have deep community roots.
Small Business Digital Alliance
A public-private partnership that connects small businesses with critical technology resources to start and expand their e-commerce business to scale for success.
Small Business Innovation Research
Also known as "America's Seed Fund," more than $4 billion of non-dilutive capital is allocated annually to launch the next generation of innovative startups.