NEW YORK (MainStreet) — Small businesses got an early gift for the holidays.
More than 100 million shoppers visited local independently owned stores the day after Black Friday to celebrate the second annual Small Business Saturday, according to estimates released this week by American Express, the chief organizer for the national movement.
By all accounts, Small Business Saturday attracted greater attention this year than in 2010. American Express found that two thirds of the public was aware of the day’s significance, up from 37% the year before. Likewise, some 2.7 million people joined the Facebook page for Small Business Saturday, more than twice the number who did so in 2010.
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In fact, a separate report from the National Retail Federation found that 86.3 million people shopped online and in stores on Black Friday, which means that more people visited their local businesses on Small Business Saturday than shopped at retailers on what is supposed to be the busiest shopping day of the year. Of course, just how much consumers actually bought on these two days is another matter. American Express did not include sales figures for Small Business Saturday.