Local Shopping Survey: Small Business Saturday to Make Big Impact

This holiday season, many shoppers are likely to make purchases at large retailers like Walmart and Amazon. But smaller, local businesses are trying to attract holiday shoppers as well, partially through promotions like American Express’s Small Business Saturday, which takes place on November 26 this year. In fact, Small Business Saturday spending exceeded $16.2 billion last year according to a study from the National Federation of Independent Business and American Express. So how many consumers are likely to shop at local businesses this Small Business Saturday and throughout the holiday season? We asked 1,000 respondents about their holiday shopping plans and their thoughts on local businesses.

local shopping

Shopping Habits

In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 32% of respondents said that they’ve purchased from stores in their local community within the past day. 37% have done so within the past week. 13% have within the past month. 6% have within the past three months. 3% have within the past year. 2% said it’s been more than a year since they last shopped at any local stores. And 8% said they aren’t local shoppers.

Overall, 72% said that they regularly shop at large retail chain stores. 49% shop at large online retailers. 47% shop at local independent shops on a regular basis. And 23% buy from independent online shops.

Local Shopping

In general, 74% said that they like supporting local businesses whenever possible. 52% said they would actually pay a little extra to shop at local businesses. And 76% think that shopping at local businesses helps their local economy.

Looking forward, 50% of respondents said that they are at least somewhat likely to shop at small retailers this holiday season. And 34% said they’re at least somewhat likely to shop at small retailers this Small Business Saturday.

Buying Decisions

When considering holiday gift purchases, 53% of respondents said they consider cost to be their most important factor. 27% said that quality is most important to them. 8% look for originality in their gift purchases. 5% value convenience. 4% care about the brand name of their gift purchases. And 2% care most about sustainability and the local impact of their purchases.

Key Takeaways

Of those who plan to buy from local retailers this holiday season, more than half plan to do so on Small Business Saturday. So that means it could certainly be worthwhile for small retailers to take advantage of the event by offering sales and creating promotions and special marketing materials, especially if those materials focus on things like price and quality. In addition, since most believe that local shopping can have a positive impact on the local community, it could be beneficial for tourism businesses or business groups in specific cities to build campaigns aimed at supporting all of the businesses in the area.

You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.

Photo Credit: Baker County Tourism – basecampbaker.com 16177 by Baker County Tourism under CC BY-ND 2.0

What do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.

Results were collected on November 12-18 via AYTM’s online survey panel.

Anne Pilon brings 3 years experience to AYTM as a blogger and journalist. She has a degree in journalism and marketing communications from Columbia College in Chicago and enjoys writing about business, marketing, social media, and art.