I’ve written before about Chicago’s rise as one of the nation’s top innovation hubs. There’s no doubt that Chicago’s success helps shine a light on the strength of the Midwest, but innovation isn’t limited to Windy City. It’s emerging all over the Midwest, so I wanted to zoom out and look at the role the region plays more broadly in the burgeoning enterprise software landscape. To help me dig into this, I turned to G2.
G2 is a unicorn from Chicago. But more importantly for this article, G2 is the largest and most trusted software marketplace in the world, with 1.7 million B2B software reviews verified by real users on over 125,000 validated products in more than 2,100 categories. So they’re the perfect source for the latest data on some of the hottest companies in the Midwest.
Keep in mind that G2 breaks the mold for analysis like this. They disrupt the status quo by relying on authentic, real-time user insights. Its market is do not “pay to play”, meaning vendors can’t pay to be listed higher on category pages, so shoppers can trust ratings and reviews.
Each year, G2 releases its Best Software Awards, recognizing companies and products across a number of different lists (company size, software category, etc.) based on unique scoring methodologies that combine data of these verified reviews with information on market presence. There was no list specific to the Midwest, so we performed an analysis to determine the presence of B2B software companies headquartered in the following states: Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, and Ohio.
What we found is that among software vendors based in the Midwest, defined as any B2B software company that has one or more products listed on G2.com, 30% are headquartered in Chicago, 38% have a base in the state of Illinois. . This indicates that the remaining 70% of the top B2B software vendors in the Midwest are based outside from Chicago!
We’ve highlighted the top three software companies in each state based on G2 data. That’s a pretty impressive list of innovators.
Anyone looking for the latest, cutting-edge products should take note of what’s happening in the heartland. From customer relationship management to recruitment and human capital management, the breadth and depth of innovation happening in the region is remarkable, and it’s an exciting time for start-ups and more established players in the region.