Alabama is the second most business-friendly state in the country, according to a new survey.
Only Utah ranked higher, according to the survey, which was produced by thumbtack.com, an online service that connects customers to small businesses, and the Kauffman Foundation, which supports entrepreneurship through grants.
Rhode Island was found to be the least business-friendly state.
Alabama's performance improved significantly compared to last year when the state ranked 10th overall.
The survey asked more than 7,700 small business owners around the country a series of questions about the business environment.
States were ranked according to 11 aspects of business friendliness, including overall business friendliness and more specific measures like the friendliness of the licensing code, tax code, environmental regulations and the quality of local training networks.
Alabama ranked at or near the top in all categories, including overall business friendliness.
The survey also ranked some major cities but none in Alabama.