What Is Small Business Saturday?

Unless you've been living under a rock for the vast majority of your adult life, you've probably heard of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Both of these holiday shopping occasions boast incredible deals and a total rush for bargain hunters, but Small Business Saturday is where it's at. So what is Small Business Saturday? Well, if you want to support local, small merchants, and your local mom and pop shop, it's your ideal shopping day, and soon, you'll be forgetting all about those two other shopping experiences that sandwich it.

Back in 2010, Small Business Saturday was created by American Express as a counterpart to the overwhelming patronage of massive brick and mortar retailers and large e-commerce websites. As opposed to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Small Business Saturday encourages consumers to patronize local, small stores instead of heading over to your neighborhood target for that huge deal on a TV or kitchen appliance. What's so great about the big day is that you can take money you saved the previous day — on Black Friday — and place it back into you own community. Plus, you won't have to be one of the masses huddled in a at 6:00pm on Thanksgiving day.

Since its inception in 2010, Small Business Saturday has taken off quite a bit. In fact, if you're an avid Twitter user, you may have seen the #SmallBusinessSaturday on any given weekend throughout the year. That's partially because of the popularity the event has gained in it's official date — the Saturday following Black Friday. Now, the hashtag is used to promote local commerce as a whole.

The shopping holiday has definitely raised awareness regarding how important it is to support local economies, and it shows in how many participated. Last year, an estimated $14.3 billion dollars was spent at local businesses on the big. In fact, Small Business Saturday was so popular that President Obama himself visited well-known Washington, D.C. bookstore Politics and Prose with daughters Sash and Malia to celebrate the big day.

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American Express doesn't just encourage participation either. The company is so dedicated that it assists local brick and mortar stores with promotion for their shops. Plus, they assist neighbors who wish to set up events encouraging participation in the event. Basically, if you want your community to participated, American Express will help you make it happen.

So if you're planning on dropping some serious cash on Black Friday, be sure to save some for Small Business Saturday as well. While your savings game will be strong on Friday and Monday, Small Business Saturday presents you with a unique opportunity to get great stuff and help build your community.

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