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By Google Search Volume Growth (Last 15 Years)

Searches for bootstrapped are growing WAY more quickly than venture capital. In fact, over the last 15 years, search growth for “Venture Capital” has actually been negative. While searches for “Bootstrapped” have roughly doubled.

What does this tell us?

Startups that have raised millions in venture capital might get most of the media attention. But people’s Google search attention primarily goes to the bootstrapped approach.

Another interesting note:

The absolute number of searches for “bootstrapped” is MUCH higher than for “venture capital” too.

So it’s clear from the data: Venture capital used to be the only way to go in the startup world. But now, more people look to potentially self-fund their businesses via bootstrapping instead.