Record Spend on Small Business Saturday

A record £1.1 Billion was spent on UK’s Small Business Saturday as shoppers support local high street.

The UK’s eighth annual Small Business Saturday, which took place on December 5, 2020, saw 15.4 million people hitting the high street and shopping small, according to research commissioned by founder and principal supporter American Express. This represented a decline in footfall compared to last year, but the average per person spend rose over 50% from £45.42 in 2019 to £70.74 in 2020, bringing to total over the Billion-pound mark for the first time ever.

Shoppers who took to the high street demonstrated a real sense of community spirit, with 48% stating that they chose to spend money with small businesses as they wanted to support them as much as possible after a tough year.

The campaign was supported by political figures including the Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Chancellor Rishi Sunak, leader of the opposition Keir Starmer, First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon and a host of members of parliament who visited small businesses in person or virtually. 

The campaign also drew high engagement on social media, with #SmallBusinessSaturday trending throughout the day.

Michelle Ovens MBE, Director of Small Business Saturday, said, “It is fantastic to see such phenomenal, record-breaking support for small businesses, in one of the toughest years many have ever experienced. Small Business Saturday has been running for eight years, but this year’s campaign has been our most vital. We are delighted that it’s generated such a massive boost for small businesses, at a time they are facing huge challenges with the ongoing effects of the pandemic.

“While there is light at the end of the tunnel for 2021, this winter is still going to be tough for many small businesses and it’s so important that we all continue to support them. This year Small Business Saturday is not just about one day, but all of the small actions that individuals can do across the winter to add up to one big impact.”

Charlotte Duerden, Managing Director UK, American Express, said, “Small businesses play such a vital role in their local communities and need our support more than ever. So, it’s truly good news that we’ve seen the biggest ever boost to spending with local independents this Small Business Saturday. What’s even more encouraging is that this commitment to shopping small looks set to continue, not just this month, but for the longer term.”