November 2020

Shopping With Purpose

Small Business Saturday is no longer a one day, hometown event.

While Small Business Saturday became a national holiday 10 years ago, consumer sentiment for “Shop Small” has never carried more meaning than it does in 2020. Today, “Shop Small” is driven more by purpose than by mere location or date. Thanks to e-commerce and online marketplaces like Etsy and Shopify, shopping small extends beyond the local mom-and-pop shop to businesses and communities in cities and towns where the shopper may never have the opportunity to visit in person. Shoppers seeking curated and unique items can help support small businesses that align with their personal values, from Main Streets across the country or anywhere in the world, any day of the year.

Marketplace and Consumer Trends

The events of 2020 have heightened social consciousness and demand for corporate and brand transparency. This has inspired many consumers to shop for purpose-driven brands, and to engage with businesses that show empathy and genuine concern for society, their employees and communities this holiday season.

  • 60% of shoppers ages 18+ plan to do at least half of their holiday shopping at local retailers this year.
  • 75% of consumers say they’ll do at least some of their holiday shopping online this year (up from 65% last year) and 43% plan to shop exclusively online.
  • During the pandemic, 33% of consumers discovered small merchants they didn’t previously know about, and 83% say they plan to purchase gifts from new stores they discovered while shopping from home.
  • 39% of consumers said they want to shop at retailers that have shown support for the Black Lives Matter movement and 40% of consumers said they plan to support minority-owned businesses this season.
  • Women owned businesses grew 21% from 2014 to 2019, with the strongest growth among African-American, women-owned businesses at 50%, and businesses owned by women of color at 43%.
  • 57% of consumers say they would be inspired to shop with a retailer that supported their staff and customers during the crisis.

Product Highlights

Pitmaster LT’s
PITMASTER LT’s BBQ Sauces and Rubs are the creations of Mr. “LT”–a proud U.S. Army veteran and barbecue pitmaster. Drawing from experiences living in Kansas City and operating a local BBQ joint, he developed and perfected his BBQ sauces and dry rubs over the course of three decades. PITMASTER LT’s is Made in the USA and available at stores in the U.S., Canada, and the Middle East.
Chicago French Press
Founded by Kris Christian, coffee enthusiast, social entrepreneur, and former Wall Street analyst, Kris always wondered why she couldn’t find a strong bold and flavorful coffee–so she created it using her beloved French Press. Each Chicago French Press flavor is made from organic, 100% arabica beans roasted daily and flavored by hand. Beyond robust brews, CFP is “grinding for a cause” and supports nationwide and local 501(c)3 organizations by donating a portion of its proceeds to charitable programs annually.
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Gooseberry Designs 
Nina Kulick’s business started as a hobby: making maps for friends’ weddings. In 2006, after her first child was born, so was Gooseberry Designs. Nina, the owner and designer, is dedicated to good design and beautifully made products. She specializes in stylish hand-drawn maps and illustrations that adorn her Made-in-the-USA goods, ranging from tea towels and totes to laser-etched serving boards.
Redwood + Co
Redwood + Co are makers of quality fine fragrances for home and body. Tried and true, simple, yet sophisticated, their products are meticulously hand-crafted in small batches, blending pure, sustainable and, nature-based ingredients. Founded by husband duo Mark Wilkinson + Chris Wood in 2015, Redwood + Co has grown from a small local shop in Staunton, Virginia to a nationally sought-after brand. Every step of the process is handled in-house by their incredible team; from fragrance blending to label design, hand-pouring to shipping. They pride themselves in providing high-quality products that folks will return to again and again.
Blue Coolers
Marcus and Chris are a couple of hard-working Americans that love enjoying the outdoors with their family and friends. Whether it was camping, boating, weekend bbq’s, hunting, fishing or just hanging out with the family in the backyard, they were a bit fed up with the cost of super coolers offered in the market. With a work history in manufacturing and procurement, they figured they just might be able to do something about that. So, in 2018, they quit their full-time jobs, combined their work history and resources, and set out to build a best-in-class cooler that didn’t break the bank. Blue Coolers offers 30-to-100-quart coolers in three universal colors.

Data Sources

Sources: Visa Back to Business Study; Accenture; Criteo; American Express State of Women-Owned-Businesses.


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