Consumers say they will be out in full force on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, Small Business Saturday, to support the small businesses that fuel the U.S. economy, create jobs and keep communities thriving. Of the tens of millions of Americans familiar with Small Business Saturday, 67 percent are planning to "shop small" on the day, November 24th, 2012 (44% said they shopped at small businesses on Small Business Saturday in 2011), according to the Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey. The new research, released today by the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) and American Express, shows that of those consumers who shopped last year on Small Business Saturday, 70 percent plan to spend more or the same amount this year and will spend on average $100 on Small Business Saturday.
Thousands of small businesses around the country are planning special offers, partnering with neighboring businesses, and hosting events to support the small business shopping day. Small Business Saturday, which falls between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, was created in response to small business owners' most pressing need: more customers.
"Small Business Saturday has become the ceremonial kick-off to the holiday shopping season for small business owners across the country," said Susan Sobbott, President at American Express OPEN. "Small Business Saturday provides an opportunity to harness the nation's enthusiasm for small business and celebrate their impact on local communities and the national economy."
Additional findings from the Small Business Saturday Insights Consumer Survey include:
- The top five places that consumers plan to shop on Small Business Saturday are restaurants (52%), bakeries (35%), clothing stores (34%), gift shops (31%) and book shops (29%).
- The number one reason that consumers plan to support small businesses on November 24th is they value the contributions small businesses make to their community (76%), while the number two reason was better customer service (59%).
- 50% of those planning to shop on Small Business Saturday plan to "shop small" with a friend.
- 67% of consumers plan to eat out at small, independently-owned restaurant on Small Business Saturday this year.
- Word-of-mouth is the top way that consumers find small, independently-owned shops and restaurants in their communities (79%).
"America's small businesses contribute to their communities in innumerable ways—creating half of private sector jobs, generating the revenue that spurs continued growth, and supporting the families they employ; it's no surprise that American consumers have a deep trust in, and admiration for, the small-business community," said NFIB CEO Dan Danner. "Small Business Saturday gives us a chance to show our appreciation and to help America's job creators in a very real way, by patronizing small shops, restaurants and service providers. Anything that helps with sales is certainly appreciated by small-business owners, many of whom have struggled to stay afloat in a rough and uncertain economy."
One reason for the success of Small Business Saturday has been that many community groups and small businesses have taken ownership of the day. According to the first installment of the Small Business Saturday Insights survey released earlier this month by NFIB and American Express, of the small business owners planning to leverage Small Business Saturday, 81 percent said Small Business Saturday would be more effective if their communities came together and hosted events.
For its part, NFIB wants to lend a hand and put small businesses front and center by helping small and independent businesses to get the word out online about their best Small Business Saturday deals. Small-business owners can go to www.nfib.com/smallbizsat to submit information about their business and why shoppers should visit on November 24th. NFIB will promote these submissions on NFIB.com and in front of NFIB's 150,000+ Facebook fans and 30,000+ Twitter followers.
In order to help rally communities around Small Business Saturday, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the world's largest business organization representing the interests of more than three million businesses of all sizes, will organize Small Business Saturday events through their local member chambers. To date nearly 50 member chambers have rallied businesses in their communities and will host local activities leading up to and on November 24th, where attendees will have the opportunity to pick up tote bags, and to get American Express® Shop Small® Gift Cards provided by American Express as part of a community activation program.
For the third year in a row, American Express is offering Cardmembers the opportunity to get a $25 statement credit when they enroll their eligible American Express® Card and then use the card to spend $25 or more on a single in-store transaction at a qualifying small business location on Small Business Saturday. Enrollment is limited and opens on November 18th on www.shopsmall.com. Offer terms apply and are available at www.shopsmall.com/offerterms.
American Express also created a Shop Small® Map on www.ShopSmall.com. The interactive map allows consumers to find local American Express Card accepting small businesses where they can redeem the offer, while the new "Rally Your Community" feature is designed to connect consumers with small businesses in their area.
For the second year running, FedEx offered $1 million worth of American Express® Shop Small® Gift Cards, each worth $25, to consumers via Facebook (www.facebook.com/fedex). This year, 40,000 winners were selected at random from among all eligible entrants. Entrants were notified on or about November 9 as to whether they were a winner and also provided with a coupon to save $10 on a $20 FedEx shipment. Cards will be mailed to the winners for delivery by approximately November 21. There are no consumer fees of any kind associated with the American Express® Shop Small® Gift Card. For additional information on the FedEx Gift Card give-away, visit fedex.com/giftcard.
About the Survey
This survey was conducted among a nationally representative sample of 1000 males and females 18 years of age or older. The sample was collected using an email invitation and an online survey. The study was conducted anonymously by Redshift Research between November 7th and November 12th, 2012. The survey has a margin of error of +/- 3.1 %, at the 95% level of confidence.
About Small Business Saturday
November 24th marks the third annual Small Business Saturday, a day to support the local businesses that create jobs, boost the economy and preserve neighborhoods around the country. Small Business Saturday (SBS) was created in 2010 in response to small business owners' most pressing need: more customers. In 2011, more than 2.7 million Facebook users, 230 public and private organizations, 75 corporations and elected officials in all 50 states and Washington D.C. declared their support for SBS. Last year, more than 500,000 small business owners leveraged an online tool or promotional materials for SBS and 15,000 businesses signed up for free Facebook advertising to promote their products and services in the run up to SBS. American Express is the founding partner of SBS.
NFIB is the nation's leading small business association, with offices in Washington, D.C., and all 50 states. Founded in 1943 as a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, NFIB gives small and independent business owners a voice in shaping the public policy issues that affect their business. NFIB's powerful network of grassroots activists sends their views directly to state and federal lawmakers through our unique member-only ballot, thus playing a critical role in supporting America's free enterprise system. NFIB's mission is to promote and protect the right of our members to own, operate and grow their businesses. More information about NFIB is available online at www.NFIB.com/newsroom.