Learn more about how to support local businesses during Small Business Saturday in part three of BBB’s four-part safe holiday shopping series.
Small Business Saturday is a nationwide movement initially founded by American Express and cosponsored by the Small Business Administration (SBA) focused on supporting small businesses for all they do in their communities. Celebrated on the Saturday between Black Friday and Cyber Monday every year, Small Business Saturday encourages U.S. consumers to shop small and shop local for their holiday gifts, family get-togethers and other needs. Over the past 12 years since the movement began, support has continued to increase as consumers search out local businesses, with an estimated $23.3 billion spent at independent retailers and restaurants during the day in 2021, an 18-19% increase from 2019 and 2020 levels.
In Texas, there are 3.1 million small businesses that employ 4.9 million people. Most are owned and operated by a single individual with no employees (2.6 million), and only 2% employ more than 20 people. Many difficulties are encountered by the 2.6 million small business owners responsible for every aspect of their business’s operations, including taxes, logistics, maintenance and marketing which can impact their success and longevity. On average, 1-in-3 new businesses survive their 10th year in operation, mostly due to difficulties in establishing a customer base in a competitive market.
Nationwide movements such as Small Business Saturday can positively impact small businesses whether they are a retailer, restaurant or contractor, and Better Business Bureau encourages consumers to participate by searching out local businesses to support on Nov. 26. There are multiple ways for consumers to show appreciation for small businesses in their community, such as:
Be social. Support small businesses in your community by “liking” them on social media, writing positive reviews, posting positive photos and tagging the company in your posts. Promoting these businesses through social channels has the same effect as “word-of-mouth” recommendations, enhancing their digital presence.
Go to the source. While there will always be times when delivery is the best option, consumers should try to go directly to the source of purchase. Third-party delivery services charge restaurants fees to use their services, taking away from the profit margins of small businesses. Small businesses listing their products on “digital shops,” such as Amazon or eBay, may also have a percentage of the sale diverted to the hosting website. By going directly to the source of these products, consumers can support small businesses by removing the middleman.
Participate in community events. Farmers' markets, networking events, community celebrations and holiday celebrations are fantastic avenues to support locally-owned small businesses, meet your community and learn what local businesses offer. It is also where ideas, opportunities, and knowledge can be shared, strengthening your small business community. Check to see if there are any events being organized in your area you can attend during Small Business Saturday.
Research local contractors. If there is a major improvement project that will need the assistance of a contractor to complete, search for reputable businesses based in your community first. Use online search engines such as BBB.org to find the right contractor for the work you need done and have confidence you are contracting with an ethical business by looking for the BBB Accreditation seal. Businesses that are accredited by Better Business Bureau have passed the organization’s rigorous evaluation process and are held to a high standard of practice to maintain accreditation. Customers of an Accredited Business can also rely on BBB’s dispute resolution process in the event a complication arises. Visit BBB.org to learn more about BBB’s Standards for Trust that all Accredited Businesses must adhere to.
For more holiday shopping tips from your Better Business Bureau, visit BBB.org/Holiday.
ABOUT BBB: The Better Business Bureau has empowered people to find businesses, brands and charities they can trust for over 110 years. In 2021, people turned to BBB more than 200 million times for BBB Business Profiles on 6.3 million businesses and Charity Reports on 25,000 charities, free at BBB.org. Local, independent BBBs can be found across the United States, Canada, and Mexico, including BBB serving the Heart of Texas, which was founded in 1950 and serves 105 counties across Texas.