Looking for the highlight reel? Here is a quick list of coaching statistics.
- 1.7 million active coaches on Linkedin.
- 52,905 certified life coaches across 168 countries in 2022.
- Life coaching is one of the fastest-growing industries in the US.
- 23,201 registered life coaching businesses in 2022.
- The estimated global revenue from coaching in 2022 was $15.2 billion
- The percentage change in total revenue for coaches between 2015-2019 was 36% in the US.
As an aspiring or current life coach, keep reading if you are interested in learning more about the state of the industry below. 👇
Before you burst onto the scene as a life coach, you likely want reassurance that there are ample opportunities for coaches.
Whether you’re trying to convince others to support your coaching career or just want to validate your own decision to become a coach, making a case for jumping in headfirst can be difficult without any cold, hard facts in hand.
That’s why we put together this complete guide to life coaching industry statistics. We’ll also explore why life coaching is a booming industry, along with some challenges you may face as a new coach.
How Big is the Global Life Coaching Industry?
According to the International Coaching Federation, there are approximately 52,905 life coaches based in 168 countries worldwide as of October 2022. This is a massive increase from the 33,594 coaches that were in the industry in 2019.
And in December 2021, ICF saw its biggest increase in new members, with 2,193 coaches joining the association.
The estimated global market value from coaching will be $15.2 billion in 2023. That’s up from $2.849 billion in 2019. And the coaching industry is the 458th largest industry by market size in the U.S.
That’s impressive if you account for the fact that life coaching is a concept that’s only been around for about 40 years old.
Pro Tip: If you’re all about market research and interesting life coaching industry statistics, then you’ll be pleased to know that IBISWorld has done annual reporting on the coaching industry for about a decade. Though their reports are packed with jargon, their general predictions state that the coaching industry will greatly benefit from rising levels of disposable income in the coming years.
According to many coaching experts, the industry is only poised to continue to grow. In fact, a majority of coaches anticipate two of the coaching specialties that will see the biggest growth in the next year are life vision and enhancement.
How Big Is The Life Coaching Industry in the U.S.?
The life coaching industry in the US is large and only getting better.
In fact, there are 23,201 registered life coaching businesses in the US in 2023. That’s a 4.8% annualized growth increase since 2018.
- In terms of growth, life coaching is the second fastest-growing industry in the US (just behind IT, of course!), and it’s seeing increased demand in all 50 states.
- The states that have the most registered life coach businesses are California, Florida, and Texas.
- When you are looking only at certified American coaches, ICF says they have 21,176 coaching practitioners as of October 2022.
So, How Many Life Coaches Are There?
The number of life coaching industry statistics that we’ve shared so far are just registered life coaching businesses and certified life coaching practitioners.
As a non-regulated industry with few barriers to entry, there are A LOT more life coaches that are operating as sole proprietors without any fancy certifications.
Another really interesting set of life coaching industry statistics comes from the networking site LinkedIn:
- A search for ‘coaches’ on LinkedIn brought up over 1.7 million active coaches in February 2023. To put that in perspective, that’s more than the entire population of Phoenix, Arizona.
- A search for ‘life coach’ brought up over 104,000 life coaches. 51,000 of those coaches live in the U.S. To put this in perspective, there are more active life coaches in business than the total population for the city of South Bend, Indiana.
- A search for ‘business coach’ brought up over 37,000 business coaches on Linkedin. 10,000+ of them live in the U.S.
According to Google Trends, the number of people that search for life coaching on Google is steadily increasing each year.
Other keywords that are growing in popularity over the past few years include “life coaching certification” and “coaching certification,” meaning there are a lot more people interested in becoming coaches.
On Instagram, as of February 2023, the top three life coaching hashtags have over 19 million posts, including:
The numbers are even larger on TikTok. As of February 2023, the top three life coaching hashtags have over 3 billion views, including:
- #LifeCoach – 2.9 billion views
- #LifeCoaching – 445 million views
- #CoachingLife – 209 million views
How Much Money do Life Coaches Make?
According to ZipRecruiter, the average professional coach’s annual salary is $53,971. That’s about $4,497 per month.
Niche coaches often make a lot more. For instance, the average annual salary for a business coach is $87,281. It pays to specialize.
Why is Life Coaching a Booming Business?
Here are some of the reasons why life coaching is a growing industry, along with how you can leverage this information to grow your business.
More People Want to Be Coached
More people are aware of coaching and want to be coached these days than ever before.
In fact, according to the 2022 ICF Consumer Awareness Study, 73% of their survey respondents were aware of coaching.
- People who are currently employed were more likely to know about and/or participated in coaching in the past.
- Younger professionals were significantly more likely to have worked with a coach than their older counterparts. For instance, 47% of Millennials have worked with a coach compared to just 21% of Baby Boomers.
This growing awareness is also translating to the corporate world.
In the last ten years, companies have seen how life coaches directly help to boost their bottom line. Career and executive coaches have always charged premium prices, as their work helps companies of all sizes to get great results.
Generally, a productive team leads to higher profit margins, so more businesses are hiring coaches in order to invigorate their workforce.
However, it’s not just big companies that benefit from the existence of coaches. Because of all of the demands and stressors of modern life, more people are seeking out great life coaches that can help them handle it all.
Whether it’s an overworked Fortune 500 CEO or a wide-eyed young professional who needs help, a life coach will always be on hand to assist as best they can.
Life coaches are bonafide heroes to some people, and with so many different niches out there, you’re sure to find demand for your skillset in such a crazy mixed-up world!
The Technology Boom
The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the increased awareness and access to coaching in many ways.
For starters, it normalized online coaching sessions with the use of digital platforms, like Zoom, for coaching sessions. This means you can work with a coach from the comfort of your home, whether you live in New York City, Wichita, or a tiny town in the Nevada desert.
Technology has brought opportunities to coaches, too, by facilitating easy marketing, low-cost online advertising, and the ability to curate a great online presence. Because of the technology available to us now, there has never been a better time to be a coach.
In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic forced many people to rethink what was important to them. Anytime you are going through a difficult life transition, you are more likely to seek help.
That’s where life coaches come in.
As many coaches focus on big life transitions, the demand for them has naturally risen this decade.
The Future of the Coaching Industry
There has never been a better time to start a coaching career. If you distinguish yourself with some great training, certifications, and tools, then you’ll be on the right path.
The positive effects of life coaching are now being felt globally, and federations such as the ICF are great at keeping the coaching world up to date with the best innovative tools.
With better tools and focus comes better credibility, and that’s always a good thing for coaches. In general, the coaching industry is seeing a very steady trend of growth that’s unlikely to slow down anytime soon.
The Biggest Challenges That the Life Coaching Industry Faces
While the future of the coaching industry looks promising, that doesn’t mean there aren’t some challenges.
The Lack of Regulation in the Coaching Industry
One of the biggest reasons behind the growth of the coaching industry is also one of its biggest challenges. That is the lack of regulation.
In other words, no one can stop you from hopping on the coaching wagon.
However, just because you don’t need any certifications to get started doesn’t mean you should. According to the 2022 ICF Global Consumer Awareness Study, most of their respondents said it was important that their coach was certified. And 65% of respondents who have worked with a coach said their coach held a coaching certification/credential.
Not to mention, 23% of coaches regard uncertified coaches as one of the biggest obstacles in their business.
With a lack of regulation, this also means anyone can become a life coach. And more people are becoming life coaches every year.
The life coaches who are the most successful are the ones that master personal branding, positioning, and marketing.
A great first step to getting better at this is to niche down your coaching business.
This makes sense when you think about it. Let’s say you want to hire a career coach for one-on-one coaching to help you move past burnout. Do you want to hire a coach that will work with anyone or one that specializes in working with burnt-out executives? My guess is that you want to work with the specialist coach.
This means that as the specialist coach gets more established, they can do things like raise their rates, sell out their life coaching packages faster, introduce more lucrative group coaching) and more.
21% of coaches are worried about the risk of a global recession. While you can’t control if a recession happens, there are a few things you can do to put yourself in a better position to weather an uncertain economic environment like:
- Be consistent with your marketing efforts, so you are bringing in new leads each month.
- Have an emergency fund for your business and your life.
- Use a solid cash flow management strategy like Profit First.
The Bottom Line: The Life Coaching Industry is Growing
The life coaching industry statistics that we’ve explored in our post should give you a great deal of confidence in the industry’s potential. If you happen to face any naysayers on your journey to coaching greatness, simply pull out any of these amazing figures and sit there with a smug smile. We promise – any pesky doubters will soon disappear!