UK consumers show their loyalty to independent businesses in miles, American Express research finds


Research released by American Express shows the extent of consumer loyalty to small businesses, with UK consumers willing to make a 36 mile round-trip to visit their favourite independent businesses, and 85% willing to go out of their way to return to a small business. 

The research found that the personal service and knowledge offered by independent business owners is key when winning customer loyalty. When consumers were asked why they are prepared to make a special trip, over half cited the personal service (59%) and the specialist knowledge (49%) they receive from small business owners as the main reasons. A third (33%) of people questioned said they know the staff by name. 

Over half of those surveyed (56%) said they would continue to use a small business even if they moved location – such is their loyalty to their much-loved stores. And 47% would travel to another town or city to go to a small shop they like.

Small Business Saturday launches in the UK on 3 December 2016, tying in with the start of the busy pre-Christmas sales period for small business owners. Last year, American Express, principal supporter of Small Business Saturday, reported that the public came out in force spending £623m in small shops across the country on the day. 

American Express has a long history of working with small businesses and is once again helping small businesses attract customers in the lead-up to Christmas:

  • Online tips and marketing tools to help them promote their businesses including banners to feature on their websites and social channels
  • Downloadable logos and marketing banners to use in marketing
  • A Shop Small sticker and Open/Closed sign so that American Express Cardmembers know the business is participating in the Shop Small campaign.

American Express is also incentivising its Cardmembers to support independent businesses through a spend £10 get £5 back offer, giving them even more reason to visit small businesses this December.

For further information about tools available to businesses participating in Shop Small please visit

To find out more about Small Business Saturday go to: