How Small Business Saturday will give UK indies a much-needed revenue boost

Rodolfo Sanches Carvalho on Unsplash

Small Business Saturday is urging indie retailers to make the most of the spotlight when the campaign returns to the UK next week.

Now in its tenth year in the UK, Small Business Saturday encourages people to ‘shop local’ and support businesses in their communities. On Saturday 3 December, shoppers will support all types of small businesses both in-store and online – from independent shops and restaurants to B2B based businesses like accountants and digital marketeers.

Fashion indies taking part this year include DJV Boutique in Ipswich and Grace and Mabel in Bristol and Bath.

Inside Grace and Mabel

To mark the campaign’s significant milestone, its organisers are calling for a big show of support from the public particularly as small business owners are facing a major raft of economic challenges.

Challenging times

New research from Small Business Saturday and American Express found that while just over a third of small business owners (36 per cent) feel optimistic about the next six months, one fifth (28 per cent) also say they feel stressed and nervous. Meanwhile, 69 per cent are diversifying their business operations in response to current challenges. 

“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,” says director Michelle Ovens CBE. “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 US 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.

The trend to support small businesses has gained momentum in the UK. Small Business Saturday’s research also found that 67 per cent of small firms believe customers are shopping small to support them in current climate. 

Dan Edelman, general manager, UK merchant services at American Express, comments: “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.”

Five ways indies can take part

  • Use the campaign to engage your customers by downloading marketing materials here.
  • 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 here.