Small Business Saturday saw a record 112 million shoppers this year

Last year, US President Barack Obama shopped at Upshur Street Books in Washington, DC, during Small Business Saturday with his daughters Malia and Sasha.
Mandel Ngan | AFP | Getty Images

An estimated 112 million shoppers showed their support for Main Street on the seventh annual Small Business Saturday on Nov. 26, setting a new record for the retail event.

American Express launched the campaign in 2010 to rally support and dollars for small-business owners in the holiday shopping rush. The day has been steadily gaining in popularity and serves as an antidote to the frenzy of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which tend to support major retail companies.

The estimated 112 million shoppers and diners who reported spending money on Main Street last Saturday represent a 13 percent increase over the year prior, according to the Post-Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey from the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) and American Express.

Also adding to the momentum of the day, an impressive 72 percent of U.S. consumers now know about Small Business Saturday. That's a slight uptick from the 70 percent in 2015.

The day gets a big push from politicians, likely because almost nine in 10 Americans view small businesses favorably, according to a poll conducted on behalf of the Public Affairs Council in the last election cycle.

In previous years, President Obama has gone out in his jeans and casual jacket to pick up a few gifts with his daughters Malia and Sasha on Small Business Saturday. In 2015, the first family shopped at two independent bookstores, Upshur Street Books and Politics and Prose, both in Washington, D.C.

This year, elected officials in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., and leaders in 651 U.S. cities helped promote the day, according to an analysis of the event released today.

Small Business Saturday: A boost for local businesses?
Small Business Saturday: A boost for local businesses?