It’s that time of year again when the search is on for the UK’s most inspiring small businesses. Small Business Saturday UK has officially launched its call for outstanding enterprises across the nation to apply for a coveted spot in the SmallBiz100 lineup. This prestigious selection showcases the very best of Britain’s thriving small business community, serving as a grand countdown to the highly anticipated annual campaign on December 2nd.
Small Business Saturday, which takes place annually on the first weekend of December, has emerged as the nation’s most triumphant small business initiative. This heartfelt campaign celebrates the invaluable contributions made by small businesses and urges consumers to rally behind local enterprises in their communities.
Originally established by American Express in the United States back in 2010, Small Business Saturday has continued to gain momentum in the UK, with the brand serving as the primary supporter of the campaign on this side of the pond.
Michelle Ovens CBE, Director of Small Business Saturday UK, enthusiastically shared, “Small Business Saturday showcases the incredible achievements of the UK’s small businesses and pays tribute to the extraordinary impact they have on our country and local communities. Given the ongoing challenges faced by small firms, this campaign remains an essential platform.”
Ovens added, “We are thrilled to commence the next decade of this campaign by embarking on a search for the most sensational small businesses from all corners of the UK. So, if you are the proud owner of a captivating small enterprise that brings something truly special to the world around you, we invite you to share your story with us! Whether you operate online or on the high street, from an office or the comfort of your own home, catering to consumers or businesses within the supply chain, we encourage you to apply for this year’s lineup.”
On Small Business Saturday, customers across the UK make a conscious effort to support various types of small businesses, including independent shops, restaurants, service providers, and B2B enterprises such as accountants and plumbers. Many small businesses actively participate by hosting events and offering enticing promotions to mark the occasion.
Since the UK campaign’s inception in 2013, over 1,000 small businesses have been featured in the esteemed SmallBiz100, representing various sectors and geographical locations. From an enchanting ice cream parlour in Dorset and a captivating bookshop in Bognor Regis, to a thriving PR firm in Worcestershire and a vintage furniture store in Glasgow, the campaign has brought forth a dazzling array of enterprises.
Last year, the illustrious SmallBiz100 list included For the Love of the North, a Whitley Bay store that curates prints, cards, and gifts by Northern artists. Lucy and Paul Hull, the founders, raved about their experience, saying, “Being part of the SmallBiz100 is an incredible opportunity to proudly showcase your work, express your passion, and inspire others who are pursuing their dreams. It truly is a fabulous community of like-minded, independent small businesses.”
Andrew Deighton, owner of AWD Development Solutions Ltd, a prominent high-performance training and consulting business, also emphasized the benefits of being selected as one of the SmallBiz100. Deighton shared, “Being chosen for the SmallBiz100 provided a much-needed boost during a challenging year. It’s a wonderfully supportive and engaged community.”
Small Business Saturday not only generates massive attention on the day itself but also leaves a lasting impact throughout the year. Last year, the campaign trended at the top spot on Twitter in the UK, receiving public endorsements from the Prime Minister, leader of the opposition, and the Mayor of London. Additionally, over 90% of local councils offered their support.
Dan Edelman, General Manager of UK Merchant Services at American Express, commented, “Small businesses contribute immensely to local communities across the UK but continue to face a host of challenges. That’s precisely why we champion them and the inspiring entrepreneurs who drive these businesses forward. We are proud to offer ongoing support to Small Business Saturday and encourage our Cardmembers to patronize small businesses throughout the year.”
To seize the chance to be featured in this year’s SmallBiz100, small businesses can submit video applications throughout June by visiting the Small Business Saturday website: https://smallbusinesssaturdayuk.com/small-biz-100