Which Small Business Events Should I Attend In 2023

Attending small-business conferences is one of the best ways for small business owners to network, build connections and partnerships, and generate leads for their companies. The cancellation due to Covid-19 only confirmed this. Virtual meetings do not provide the same value.

This article outlines what you need to know to find the events most valuable to you and reveals some of the best small-business conferences in 2023.

Small Business Conferences: The Basics

Small business conferences and trade shows vary widely. What they share in common is that they make it possible for small-business owners to come together so they can grow their companies. At a typical conference, you can expect:

  • View presentations from industry leaders
  • Attend workshops and seminars
  • Spend time networking with other professionals.

networking is a major part of most conferences. Attend as many social events as possible, even if you are not an extrovert. Luncheons, dinners and parties are the perfect environment to make new friends, learn from other business owners and professionals, build brand awareness, discover new vendors and chat with people in a casual setting.

Which Small-Business Conference Should You Attend?

Finding the right forum for you and your business can seem overwhelming. A great way to develop your shortlist is to talk to other small-business owners in your industry. Check online ratings and reviews to find out what attendees of past events thought about their experience.

Get involved with industry-focused or topic-specific events. They provide more value than normal conferences. For example, if your business is in tech, find out which conferences cater to your technical field. If you’re a brand new startup, find conferences that attract venture capitalists and angel investors who fund businesses in your industry.

Be aware: You may need to spend money to get to the conference that’s right for you, but it should be worth your while. Plus, you can write off most of the expenses on your taxes. Check with your tax expert to make sure you are not making any mistakes that could get you in trouble.

Top Small Business Conferences for 2023

Here are my five top picks for small business conferences already scheduled for 2023. Don’t limit your thoughts to these. There may be smaller, more limited industry events that can benefit your business. I selected these because they are high quality, well executed trade shows that are known to provide value to attendees.

Small Business Expo

The Small Business Expo is not a stand-alone event. It is one of a series of National Small Business Conferences to be held at convention centers and other locations across the United States through 2023. Some of the cities and dates currently scheduled include:

  • Orlando, February 28, 2023
  • Washington, DC, March 15, 2023
  • Philadelphia, March 29, 2023
  • Boston, April 13, 202Chicago, April 26, 2023
  • New York City, June 23, 2023
  • San Francisco, August 18, 2023
  • Los Angeles, September 6, 2023

This is only a partial list, and dates are constantly being added, including cities like Atlanta, so it’s essential to monitor the Small Business Expo website.

Small Business Expo is one of the most widely attended conferences for small business owners anywhere. It attracts entrepreneurs, experienced professionals and presenters from many different industries. The good news for small business owners is that attending the Small Business Expo in person or online is free.

If you’re new to small business conferences, the Small Business Expo can provide a great first experience.

WBENC (Women Business Enterprise National Council) Conference

WBENC takes place March 20 to 23 in Nashville, Tennessee. This is the 26th year of the conference.

The WBENC Expo is a massive networking and information-gathering event that includes booths, interactive exhibitor demonstrations and activities, women-owned business demos, one-on-one meeting opportunities and more. WBENC is the largest organization in the United States that certifies women-owned businesses and supports women business owners. If your business is female-owned, this conference can provide a great networking opportunity.

During Open Expo, you will have the opportunity to mingle and network with exhibitors organized by industry type. You can look for new contacts, solutions and potential customers and clients.

The event can be a bit pricey for some small business owners, but most find it worthwhile. In many cases, the cost can be written off on your federal taxes. The introductory price for a Full Event Pass purchased before February 23, 2023 is $849.00. After that, the cost becomes $949.00 for online registration and $1,049 for onsite registration. The Full Event Pass provides access to general sessions, meals and receptions on all days of the conference.

If the entire conference is too big of a commitment for you, you can get a one-day pass with introductory pricing starting at $499.00, $549.00 if you purchase online after February 23, 2023, or $549.00 if you register to the program If you do you can get $559.00. The Day Pass provides one day access to the conference.


INBOUND Small Business Conference takes place September 5 to 8, 2023 in Boston, Massachusetts. There is also an online opportunity from 7th to 9th September.

This conference moderated by hubspot, has been exclusively virtual. However, last year it became a hybrid experience, which proved to be quite successful. This year you can join in person for three days of speakers and networking in Boston or join online for two days from wherever you are. Provides information on inbound marketing, business management, entrepreneurship, and customer satisfaction. Past speakers include Oprah Winfrey and HubSpot co-founder Dharmesh Shah.

INBOUND offers several pricing tiers, so most business owners should be able to find a way to attend or participate in a conference. General admission, in-person pricing starts at $695 and includes access to all streaming and in-person events and sessions, along with concierge support for hotel room bookings.

A VIP tier costs $1,699.00 and comes with all the benefits of general admission, plus access to an exclusive welcome party, complimentary lunch, matchmaking event, reserved seating, advanced registration, VIP lounge access, and hotel registration early access to

Startups and new business owners can take advantage of the Starter Pass which provides free access to all live-streamed content. For $99.00, you can get access to a wide range of online content including webinars, among other benefits, for an entire year.


LeedsCon is scheduled for March 13 to 15 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

If your top priority is generating and converting more leads, this could be the ideal small business program for you. Executive-level speakers have been sharing strategies and insights on nurturing and converting more quality leads at this event since 2007.

Company owners in all business sectors can benefit from participating in Leadscon, including mortgage and lending, insurance, fintech, education, auto, home services and healthcare. Over 25 different verticals are represented.

General admission for LeadCon is $949.00. It provides access to keynotes, networking events, general sessions, exhibitions and post-show content. With a $150.00 discount on each ticket, general admission for groups of three or more is $799.00. The price drops to $749.00 for groups of eight or more. If you know other business owners who are also interested in generating more and better leads, it may make sense to participate together to save money.


The Brandweek Symposium is scheduled for September 11 to 14, although dates are tentative and subject to change. Pricing for the event is also currently unavailable.

Sponsorship is provided by renowned marketing and advertising publication Adweek. In this conference, it has been told how to do better marketing of your brand. It explores topics such as content creation, cyber security, creative talent procurement and virtual reality. It is an excellent event for networking and building business relationships with top Brands, Influencers and Business Leaders. Attendees can purchase a three-day in-person pass or virtual pass for this conference.

Additional Networking Ideas

If you don’t have the time and money necessary to attend a conference, there are other ways to expand your network. Here are some top ones:

be active online

Every online conversation, whether on Facebook, LinkedIn, or other social media platforms, is an opportunity to expand your network. Also, posting, commenting, liking and sharing content online is not expensive and takes relatively little time. This can be a great way for entrepreneurs and other business owners to grow their brand and expand their reach. Plus, social media knows no boundaries, so you can network with people anywhere.

join local organizations

One of the best ways to get yourself — and your company — out there is by being active with your community. Consider joining a local club, becoming a member of the Chamber of Commerce, getting involved with a charity, or joining a group related to your specific area. It’s also a great way to discover local opportunities to showcase your business.

provide excellent customer service

Strive for excellence when it comes to customer service. Be professional, kind and friendly. Going above and beyond will give people new opportunities to talk about your business, bring in new clients and customers, and build your network.

Conferences and Networking: The Bottom Line

Whether you own your own business or work for someone, attending business conferences can be a great way to grow. Small-business conferences provide attendees with an opportunity to learn new skills, gain new perspectives, get tips from industry experts and — most importantly — connect with other professionals and small business owners.

It is important to promise yourself: I am participating in at least one small business development program in 2023,

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