Press Release: Survey Shows Small Business Saturday Gaining in Popularity Among Holiday Shoppers

Consumers’ Research Annual Survey Also Shows That While Online Shopping Remains Popular, Americans Not Giving Up the In-Store Experience

Washington, D.C.—November 21, 2018-Black Friday, the traditional start to the holiday shopping season, continues to lose favor with consumers, according to a new survey by Consumers’ Research, the nation’s oldest consumer organization. Additionally, while online shopping remains popular, for the second straight year consumers indicate that they are just as likely to do most or all of their shopping in stores.

How will Americans shop this holiday season?

According to Consumers’ Research’s fifth annual holiday survey, while Cyber Monday will likely remain the most favored shopping day (46%), Small Business Saturday continues to show significant gains in popularity. This year, nearly the same percentage of people (34%) plan to shop on Small Business Saturday as Black Friday (35%). Last year, those saying they planned to shop on Black Friday (37%) far outpaced those who planned to shop the day after (23%). Interestingly, those who said they plan to do their shopping either on Christmas Eve (20%) or the day after Christmas (32%) increased significantly over the past year, both by over five percentage points. And while Cyber Monday shopping remains consistent with the growing prevalence of online shopping, many consumers still plan to do their shopping in-person.

“Because consumers have more options and opportunities to take advantage of holiday sales than ever before, I think they’re aiming to forgo the stress that Black Friday shopping can bring,” said Kyle Burgess, Executive Director, Consumers’ Research. “This intention prioritizes spending time with family and other loved ones, so I expect the trend to continue—though, the data indicates that consumers and retailers are seeing increasing utility from Black Friday sales, despite consumer intentions.”

Where will Americans shop this holiday season?

Respondents saying they plan to do half of their shopping in a store and half online jumped three percentage points from last year, to 33%. And although 29% said they plan to do most or all of their shopping in a store, 27% said they will do most or all of their shopping online. Both of these results were identical to last year’s findings.

“While consumers will certainly continue to enjoy the convenience of online shopping, they also want to take advantage of the variety of shopping experiences available to them,” Burgess said. “The in-store shopping experience can bring practical benefits, like the ability to see products up close before making purchases—but people also enjoy the opportunity to socialize and enjoy the festive atmosphere the holiday season can bring.”

To view past Consumers’ Research holiday survey results, visit:

About Consumers’ Research:

Consumers’ Research, founded in 1929, is the nation’s oldest consumer organization that seeks to increase the knowledge and understanding of issues, policies, products, and services of concern to consumers. For more information visit: http://consumersresearch.

About the Survey:

The survey was conducted from November 15-18, 2018 using the AmeriSpeak® Panel. AmeriSpeak® is NORC’s probability-based panel designed to be representative of the U.S. household population, which sets it apart from traditional “opt-in” or “convenience” panels. Interviews of 1,000 U.S. adults (18+) was conducted both online and by telephone. The margin of error on weighted data is + 3 percentage points for the full sample.

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Kyle Burgess is the co-founder of two social enterprises and has worked in strategy, communications, and program management for a decade. Kyle received her Master’s degree in International Relations & Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and her Bachelor's degree in Political Science from American University.


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