The popular Small Business Saturday campaign returns to the UK next week on Saturday, December 3 and small business owners across the country are being encouraged to make the most of the spotlight, particularly as many enter the peak trading period amidst news that the UK has entered recession.
In its 10th year in the UK, Small Business Saturday celebrates small business success and encourages people to ‘shop local’ and support businesses in their communities. On Small Business Saturday customers across the UK go out and support all types of small businesses, online, in offices and in stores; from independent shops and restaurants to small service and b2b based businesses like accountants and digital marketeers.
As it gears up to mark a decade of the campaign in the UK, organisers are calling for a big show of support from the public, to recognise the phenomenal contribution of small independents across their communities, particularly as business owners up and down the country face a major raft of economic challenges, with the cost-of-living crisis.
New research from Small Business Saturday and American Express found that while that just over a third (36%) of small business owners feel optimistic about the next six months, one fifth (28%) also say they feel stressed and nervous, and 69% are diversifying their business operations in response to current challenges. 1
“Small Business Saturday was created to offer small businesses a massive boost, and this is particularly important at the moment when times are really challenging,” said Michelle Ovens CBE, director of Small Business Saturday UK. “Public support is vital and can make a powerful difference. This campaign is a chance to celebrate your amazing small business and the phenomenal contribution you make to your local area and the wider UK. Whatever your business, whatever your size and wherever you are in your journey, Small Business Saturday is a chance for you to shine.”
A grassroots, non-commercial campaign, Small Business Saturday UK is free and open to all small firms to make the most of. Many small businesses celebrate by hosting events, offering promotions, and collaborating with other local businesses.
The campaign was originally founded by American Express in the U.S. in 2010, and it remains the principal supporter in the UK. Over the time the campaign has been running in the UK it has engaged millions around the value of small businesses and seen billions spent with small firms on Small Business Saturday.
The trend to support small businesses has gained momentum in the UK. New data from Small Business Saturday and American Express found that 67% of small firms believe customers are shopping small to support them in current climate. 2
Paulomi Debnath, left, founder of Handmade by Tinni, Said: ”Small Business Saturday campaign has been an amazing boost to my business this year, especially during the festive period. I design and make bold textile jewellery and home decor items with eco-friendly cotton rope and my products are popular as gifts. Through the campaign, I have gained increased visibility for my small creative brand nationwide. It’s a really challenging time for small businesses, so having support from the public means the world.”
Dan Edelman, General Manager, UK Merchant Services at American Express, said: “This year we look forward to celebrating the 10th anniversary of this vital campaign and shining a spotlight on the UK’s amazing small business community. We are proud to play our part as longstanding principal supporter of Small Business Saturday, and through our own Shop Small campaign.”
As well as encouraging the public to support small businesses, organisers are also urging people to back their favourite independents in other ways, whether it be leaving positive reviews, or spreading the word amongst friends and family.
Five ways businesses can celebrate Small Business Saturday
- Use the campaign to engage your customers by downloading marketing materials from https ://smallbusinesssaturdayuk.com
- Host an event or run a special promotion
- Join in online with the conversation using #SmallBizSatUK and tag @SmallBizSatUK in your celebrations
- Team up with other small businesses and community groups like your local council or BID to celebrate the campaign
- Register to be featured on the Small Business Finder map and app onhttps://smallbusinesssaturdayuk.com/my-small-business.