This page was originally published in November 2022. For the latest data, see Bankrate's 2023 Small Business Saturday Survey.
Like most people, I've been avoiding the in-person Black Friday crowds for a few years, but since 2020 I've been taking part in virtual Fridays. After Thanksgiving dinner, I sit on the couch and start loading my shopping cart on my smartphone. Try to accomplish your holiday shopping while the best sales are on the phone.
This year, we're going to do something different. Please do not make any mistakes. I'll probably still be lazing around on the couch Thursday night. However, most of the holiday shopping will be done on Small Business Saturday, two days later than usual.
Between the big consumer holidays, Black Friday and Cyber Monday, there's something more wholesome, but no less American. Small Business Saturday was created in 2011 by American Express to encourage people to do their holiday shopping at small businesses. According to his November 2022 survey from Bankrate, the holiday is gaining traction with consumers, with nearly 6 in 10 holiday shoppers planning to participate again this year.
Here's why I'm skipping Black Friday on Small Business Saturday this year and how I plan on doing so.
Why I make small purchases
I've lived in Charlotte, North Carolina for the past 20 years, and one thing that hasn't changed here is growth. Since 2010, Charlotte's population has grown by 16.3 percent, far more than North Carolina (9.5 percent) and the entire United States (7.4 percent), according to an analysis by the Charlotte Regional Business Alliance.
Many new businesses have sprung up in recent years, from sports apparel shops to boutiques to gourmet ice cream shops. But while I'm a big fan of much of the development that's been done to accommodate the city's rapid growth rate, it's bittersweet. While it's exciting to see new breweries and corporate headquarters built, it's painful to see mom-and-pop shops sidelined by either closing permanently due to rising rents or relocating to more affordable areas of the city. is.
This is a complex issue, but what I care about is supporting the small businesses that I care about. If you're sad to see your favorite store close, don't wait until you hear it's closing. Please bring your wallet.
Small Business Saturday is one way I put my money on the line. This is how I do it.
Small Business How to Shop on Saturday
Small Business Saturday is always the Saturday after Thanksgiving, and this year it falls on November 26, 2022. I will be shopping for her two siblings, three parents, a childhood friend, and a lover. Use a combination of reward credit cards on Small Business Saturday to ensure you get the most cash back.
I wanted to get most of my shopping done on Saturday, and I planned ahead to achieve this goal. There is also this method.
Local small business Saturday event
Luckily, Charlotte has pop-up markets all year round. And a quick Google search for “Charlotte Small Business Saturday” revealed his decade-old tradition around the holiday. Every year on that Saturday, several open-air markets take over the popular walkable area, totaling more than 200 stalls.
Strolling through the market while drinking coffee is one of my favorite Saturday morning activities, so I always make sure to pack my tote and attend the Small Business Saturday Market. One of the markets, Shop Small Saturday, is also scheduled to be open in December, so you can shop in waves if you like.
To find the largest events, we recommend starting with a similar search in your city.
Plan your own small business tour
If your city doesn't host one specifically for Small Business Saturday, that doesn't mean you can't participate.
Many cities have open markets on Saturdays. Once you park your car, you can browse hundreds of different stores, making it convenient for holiday shopping. Even if it's at a farmers market, you might find some great stocking stuffers or small gifts like handmade soap, locally roasted coffee, or a little hot sauce.
Another option is to make a list of your favorite local stores and spend a few hours shopping. If you need help brainstorming, we have American Express' Small Business Saturday map where you can enter your zip code to find participating businesses. Of course, you don't have to limit your shopping to businesses that appear on the American Express map, but since these businesses are pre-registered with Amex, they're more likely to have sales and promotions.
It's great to support your local community when you can, and the internet has made it possible to shop small all over the United States. Consider supporting Etsy shops, artists, and other small businesses digitally on Small Business Saturday. Check out our list of unique gifts that support inspiring small businesses.
Gift Cards: A crowd pleaser
I love shopping, but I understand why some people dread holiday shopping. On top of the crowds, there's also the pressure of finding the perfect gift for everyone on your list. If you've spent hours searching for the perfect gift and ended up buying a horrible candle, we can assure you that you're not alone.
Please enter your gift card. From a business owner's perspective, a sale is a sale, but gift cards can save you endless deliberations. Check the store's website or call ahead to see if you can purchase gift cards.
Gift cards also open up a whole new category of gifts: restaurants. I would probably choose this path for my father and stepmother. I have a hard time with their gifts because they are so messy minded. But I think they would really appreciate a gift card to their favorite local restaurant.
I'm an idealist at heart, so I tend to romanticize initiatives like Small Business Saturday that improve the world. At the same time, I live in moderation. I'm not going to emphasize the joy of gift-giving by forcing myself to only buy local holiday gifts. Small Business Saturday is my starting point. We would love to be able to tick everything off your list in one day, but we are happy to bridge the gap with big retailers.
For example, I'm curious to see what I'll find for my brother at Small Business Saturday. He loves high-tech gadgets, so you never know if he'll find just the right thing when he makes a small purchase. But who knows? You might be surprised. In any case, the intention to support small and medium-sized businesses is important.