Originally conceived by American Express in 2010 and officially cosponsored by the Small Business Administration since 2011, Small Business Saturday has become a staple of the holidays shopping season in the United States.
Founded to support local and independent businesses who have a hard time competing with large corporations on Black Friday or Cyber Monday, Statista's Felix Richter reports that Small Business Saturday drove an estimated $17.9 billion in spending at independent retailers and restaurants last year, according to the 2022 Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey commissioned by American Express.
“This year, we know that small businesses need our support now more than ever as they navigate, retool and pivot from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic,” the Small Business Administration wrote to underline the importance of the initiative.
As the following chart shows, small businesses, especially in retail, support millions of jobs in the United States.
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According to U.S. Census data, almost 10 million retail employees worked at establishments with less than 100 employees in 2021.
Almost five million worked at places with less than 20 employees, indicating that buying locally and independent doesn’t just support a small business, but also the people who depend on that business for their livelihood.