Why Export As global markets continue to grow, smart business strategy includes defining and selecting international business opportunities. Read why in the January edition of Kansas City Small Business magazine. Why Consider Exporting? Nearly 95 percent of the world's consumers live outside of the United States. So if a U.S. business is only selling domestically, it's reaching just a small share of potential customers. Exporting enables companies to diversify their portfolios and to weather changes in the domestic economy. Exporting helps small companies grow and become more competitive in all their markets. Free trade agreements have opened up markets in Australia, Chile, Singapore, Jordan, Israel, Canada, Mexico and Central America, creating more opportunities for U.S. businesses. The Economic Impact of Exporting About one of every five factory jobs - or 20 percent of all jobs in America's manufacturing sector - depend on exports. Workers in jobs supported by merchandise exports typically receive wages higher than the national average. In the past 25-plus years, U.S. exports increased five-fold from $224 billion to more than $1.3 trillion in 2008. Small businesses create 70 percent of the new jobs in America. The Number of Exporters is Growing Because nearly two-thirds of small- and medium-sized exporters only sell to one foreign market, many of these firms could boost exports by expanding the number of countries they sell to. More than two-thirds of exporters have fewer than 20 employees. Small- and medium-sized firms account for the vast majority of growth in new exporters. Small- and medium-sized companies account for almost 97 percent of U.S. exporters, but still represent only about 30 percent of the total export value of U.S. goods.