Small business

Supporting local businesses on Small Business Saturday

Small business

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are great times to shop for sale items (who doesn’t love 30% off), but these days largely benefit corporations and large retailers. Small Business Saturday encourages people to shop locally and support their community. So what can you do to support Small Business Saturday and the businesses around you?

What is Small Business Saturday?

Small Business Saturday is originally an American shopping holiday held on the Saturday after US Thanksgiving, one of the busiest shopping periods of the year. It’s the counterpart to Black Friday or Cyber Monday, where consumers shop at big retailers and larger stores with mass sales and huge discounts. The campaign encourages consumers to support small and local businesses.

After the huge success of Small Business Saturday in the US, it has become an annual campaign in the UK. It’s a chance for small businesses to promote themselves, work with other small businesses and to encourage consumers to ‘shop locally’ and support them. This year Small Business Saturday UK is on the 2nd December 2017.

Why is supporting small businesses important?

Chuka Umunna, the former Shadow Business Secretary, has said the initiative ‘strikes a chord with everyone’ as most people will know someone who runs a business or does so themselves. The UK has historically been a country built on innovation and entrepreneurship. Mr Umunna believes that consumers recognise that smaller businesses contribute massively to the community and economy.

Small Business Saturday gives independent retailers a platform to compete against large corporations. It provides healthy competition and allows for creativity. Many local businesses specialise in niche products and artisan goods, which are rarely available in large corporate retailers.

Consumers spent an estimated £717 million during the campaign in 2016. This was an increase of 15% from the previous year.

How Rocket Lawyer supports small businesses?

Many small businesses find it difficult to get the legal help they need because of costly legal fees and complexity. Rocket Lawyer wants to change things by making legal services affordable, simple and available.

Small businesses need to have robust legal documents in place to protect themselves, and to do business with customers. You can create a variety of legal documents to support your business. Terms and conditions are useful if you want to sell goods or services. Hire staff to help run your business with a contract of employment.  Manage employees properly using Rocket Lawyer’s HR policies. Ask a lawyer legal questions about your business and get a discount on solicitor fees if you need more help.

How can I support Small Business Saturday?

If you’re a consumer then this can be as simple as shopping locally. Rather than buying your weekly groceries from a large supermarket, think about shopping at your local butcher or your fruit and vegetable market.

If you’re a small business yourself, think about how you can provide your goods or services to other businesses. Give tips and advice to new businesses who have just started. It’s important for communities to help each other.

Support and promote awareness of this campaign on social media by using the hashtags #SmallBusinessSaturday, #SmallBizSatUK, #ShopLocal and #ShopSmall.

For more information visit the Small Business Saturday UK website.

Alan Cheung