By Rieva Lesonsky

Black Friday has long been a huge day for retail sales as customers crowd into stores the day after Thanksgiving. In recent years, Cyber Monday (the Monday after Thanksgiving) began attracting just as many sales as Black Friday. But now, there’s a new “day” in town—“Small Business Saturday.”

Launched by American Express OPEN and more than a dozen advocacy, public and private organizations, “Small Business Saturday”—taking place this year on November 27—is a national movement to drive shoppers to local small retailers. The reality is, both Black Friday and Cyber Monday are dominated by big companies. Small Business Saturday is an attempt to level the playing field and give small companies their share of the holiday retail pie.

Local spending at small retailers helps more than just the businesses involved. According to small business advocacy group The 3/50 Project, for every $100 spent in locally-owned, independent stores, $68 goes back to the community through taxes, payroll and other expenditures.

“Small business is the engine of job creation in the US economy,” said Kenneth Chenault, chairman and CEO of American Express, in announcing the Small Business Saturday program.  “It is also among the sectors hardest hit by the recession.  By spreading the word about Small Business Saturday, we can help raise awareness about the critical role small businesses play in cities and towns across the country at a time when they need support the most.”

How can you be part of Small Business Saturday? American Express has launched campaigns on Facebook and Twitter driving consumers and business owners to where they can participate in many ways:

  • American Express is giving a $25 statement credit to 100,000 Cardmembers who register their American Express and use it to shop on Small Business Saturday at locally owned, independent small businesses.
  • American Express is also giving $100 of free Facebook advertising to 10,000 business owners who sign up at to help build online buzz and drive customers to shop at their businesses on Small Business Saturday.  By simply entering a few pieces of information and clicking a button, business owners can create a personalized, geo-targeted ad that will run on Facebook leading up to November 27th.

For more information or to download online promotional materials, visit or