Media Information

About Small Business Saturday

Small Business Saturday UK is a grassroots, non-commercial campaign, which highlights small business success and encourages consumers to 'shop local' and support small businesses in their communities.

The day itself takes place on the first Saturday in December each year, but the campaign aims to have a lasting impact on small businesses.

On Small Business Saturday, customers across the U.K go out and support all types of small businesses, online, in offices and in stores. Many small businesses take part in the day by hosting events and offering discounts.

Press Releases

Boost For Small Biz As Major New Support Tour Launches

Small Business Saturday launches UK's first virtual roadshow to support small businesses

Small businesses across the UK are being offered a major new package of support and mentoring, as Small Business Saturday UK launches the UK's first online roadshow for towns and cities affected by the pandemic.

Launching on 2 November 2020 with daily ‘virtual visits' to small businesses and communities in over thirty locations across the U.K., Small Business Saturday UK will offer an ambitious, vibrant and intensive programme of locally targeted online advice, workshops and mentoring.

With the aim to support, encourage and uplift small businesses across the country facing the challenge of a second wave of Covid-19 restrictions, the virtual tour will form a central part of the official countdown to Small Business Saturday on 5 December.

Now in its eighth year in the UK, Small Business Saturday celebrates small business success and encourages consumers to 'shop local' and support businesses in their communities.

Kicking off in Scotland with a focus on Inverness, the tour will ‘zoom into' locations across the country each weekday; reaching everywhere from city centres like Edinburgh, Manchester, London and Cardiff, to rural communities such as Pateley Bridge in the Yorkshire Dales and Bodmin in Cornwall.

Due to the pandemic, this year's online roadshow will temporarily replace the iconic Small Business Saturday UK bus tour which has been running since the campaign began.

"This year has been incredibly tough for small businesses – financially, operationally, mentally and emotionally. This means our mission to support and celebrate small businesses across the UK becomes even more vital and ambitious", said Michelle Ovens, director of Small Business Saturday UK

"While we're obviously sad not to be visiting small businesses on the ground, we are excited to use online to reach more people than ever, and bring small businesses and their communities a tremendously useful package of support. This is all part of our promise to make this year's Small Business Saturday the best and most important one yet."

The online roadshow will include free virtual mentoring advice on a range of topics, from digital marketing, to time and money management. Live interviews and workshops with local businesses, experts, dignitaries and supporters of the campaign will also be streamed via Small Business Saturday UK's Facebook page, along with a fun-filled daily ‘Happy Hour' giveaway broadcast.

Peter Oliver, MD SME for BT's Enterprise unit, the official supporter of the Small Business Saturday bus-tour said:

"Despite this year being phenomenally tough for small businesses across the UK, we have seen many businesses embrace the benefits that being more digital can bring; for them, their employees and their customers. To make that leap, they need support and encouragement. The Tour 2020 is another great initiative from the Small Business Saturday team and we're delighted to be involved. We all have a role to play in helping our small business community and we look forward to offering mentoring support and helping them to develop their digital skills through our BT Skills for Tomorrow programme."

Small businesses can book virtual one-to-one mentoring sessions with local experts via the My Small Business Section on the Small Business Saturday website.

A grassroots, not-for-profit campaign, Small Business Saturday was originally founded by American Express in the U.S. in 2010. American Express remains the principal supporter of the campaign in the UK, as part of its avid championing of the UK high street and commitment to encourage consumers to shop small.

100 UK Small Biz Given Limelight Boost

Small Business Saturday launches its official countdown by profiling 100 UK Small Biz

One hundred of the UK's most inspiring small businesses have been chosen to mark the official countdown to Small Business Saturday, which takes place across the UK on 5 December 2020.

Coming at an incredibly tough time for many small firms, with the impact of the pandemic and recession, the 2020 Small Biz 100 will profile some of the UK's best small businesses in the 100 days build up to Small Business Saturday, as part of its mission to support and celebrate British small businesses.

The Small Biz 100 count-down kicks off with independent restaurant Chukus in Tottenham, run by brother and sister duo Emeka and Ifeyinwa Frederick, whose passion for bringing great Nigerian tapas to London has inspired a loyal following and community crowdfunding.

The campaign will go on to showcase a daily celebration of the Small Biz 100 through social media. This year's campaign includes a diverse and vibrant range of independent businesses spanning the nation - including a family run florist in Bristol, a beauty salon in Inverness, a virtual PA in Northern Ireland and a wine school in Chester.

Michelle Ovens MBE, Director of Small Business Saturday UK, said:

"This year's Small Business Saturday is going to be the most important one yet, given the phenomenally tough time small businesses have had with the double whammy of Covid-19 and now a recession. Throughout the crisis the UK has been reminded about what a special and important role small firm's play in communities across the UK. The launch of the fabulous Small Biz 100 highlights the amazing, positive impact these firms have. It's vital we continue to support small businesses as this crisis continues and we're determined to make the 2020 Small Business Saturday bigger and better than ever."

This year's cohort joins hundreds of previous Small Biz 100 alumni champions, which have been celebrated by the iconic campaign since its UK launch in 2013.

Emeka Frederick, Co-Founder of Chukus restaurant in Tottenham said:

"We are excited to be joining the Small Biz 100. As a small business whose mission is centered around building community and sharing joy, it feels very apt to be part of this positive and uplifting campaign. And in the midst of a challenging business environment, it's great to have something celebrate!"

On Small Business Saturday, customers across the UK go out and support all types of small businesses, both online and in brick-and-mortar stores. Many small businesses take an active role in promoting the day by hosting events and offering discounts.

The day itself takes place on the first Saturday in December each year, but with an impact that lasts all year round.

A grassroots, not-for-profit campaign, Small Business Saturday was originally founded by American Express in the U.S. in 2010. American Express remains the principal supporter of the campaign in the UK, as part of its avid championing of the UK high street and commitment to encourage consumers to shop small.

Dan Edelman, General Manager UK, Global Merchant and Network Services, American Express said:

"Each and every one of the businesses featured in the Small Biz 100 have a truly inspiring story to tell and this spotlight on them has never been more important or more needed. Our local communities are richer and more vibrant for the presence of these independents and we're honoured to play our part supporting them through our Shop Small campaign and as principal supporter of Small Business Saturday."

Now in its eighth year in the UK, the campaign has grown significantly each year with an estimated £800m spent in small businesses across the UK on 2019's Small Business Saturday, and a record turnout of 17.6 million people choosing to shop small on the day.

The #SmallBizSatUK campaign trended at number one in the UK on Twitter during 2019, with the Prime Minister, leader of the opposition and the Mayor of London among those publicly supporting the campaign. Over 90% of local councils also supported the campaign.

Small Business Saturday 2020 is open to all small businesses to participate in and will commence its regional bus tour roadshow during the autumn, to offer support and mentoring for small businesses in towns and cities across the UK.