There may have been a wintry chill in the air this weekend but Saturday saw the UK’s small business community benefit from the warmth of the British public who were out in force to support Small Business Saturday.
According to research an estimated £748 million was spent with small businesses across the UK. This was up 4 per cent from the £717 million spent on Small Business Saturday last year, with 56 per cent of those aware of the day saying they spent more than usual.
Now in its fifth year, Small Business Saturday continues to enjoy the support of the British public. Meanwhile, backing from local authorities was up from 80 per cent in 2016 to 87 per cent this year, with active support for the campaign including small business events and free parking on the day.
Positive consumer sentiment and support for small businesses was echoed through social media. Over 115,000 tweets were sent on the day itself reaching more than 115 million people, with Small Business Saturday UK trending at number one in the UK. Facebook and Instagram posts were also up on 2016, with more people sharing their Small Business Saturday stories.
Michelle Ovens MBE, Campaign Director of Small Business Saturday said: “In its fifth year, Small Business Saturday has once again seen a boost in spending with Britain’s small independent businesses. There’s been a phenomenal response from small businesses in communities across the UK again this year so it’s fantastic that a record amount was spent with them this Small Business Saturday.”
Charlotte Duerden, General Manager American Express UK, said: “We are proud to have supported Small Business Saturday since it was launched in the UK five years ago and are delighted to see it become an established day in the shopping calendar. The British public have once again demonstrated their support of small businesses across the country and the vital contribution they make to their communities and the economy.”
Jo MacFarlane, owner of Jo MacFarlane, a luxury candle store in Anstruther, Scotland, said: “I feel so privileged to have been part of Small Business Saturday this year and to have attended the Downing Street event last week as one of the campaign’s Small Biz 100. We ran candle-making workshops, whilst successfully encouraging the local community and 40 neighbouring business owners to get involved, all adding to a very special day. I am truly grateful to everyone at Small Business Saturday for making it happen – an honour indeed.”