Despite Inflation, Consumers Hope To Support SMBs This Holiday Season

Shoppers are in a mood for supporting small businesses even in the face of inflation and a possible recession, judging by the Small Business Now Report, a study released Thursday by Constant Contact, conducted by YouGov plc. 

Of the consumers polled, 36% would try to support SMBs more often during a recession, and 29% would pay a little more to do so.

"While inflation is certainly forcing consumers to be selective about where they spend, our findings indicate that supporting small businesses is still a priority for them — particularly during the busy holiday season,” says Laura Goldberg, CMO of Constant Contact.

On another positive note, 84% of SMBs not concerned about surviving a recession, and 90% are sure they will be in business a year from now. 

Meanwhile, 36% of consumers started their holiday shopping prior to October. Yet 51% of small businesses aren’t beginning to prepare for the season before October, leaving a short window for marketing and connecting with customers, the study says. 



This is unfortunate, given some of the negative signs: 40% of consumers plan to spend less this holiday season than they did in 2021. 

Still, 35% feel it is important to buy locally and support their communities, and 44% plan to donate or volunteer time to nonprofits.

Of those who plan to avoid big-box stores and large online retailers, 48% are doing so because they want to support small businesses. And 34% of that group feel small businesses offer a more enjoyable shopping experience.  

Email is the preferred channel for 55% of digitally inclined consumers, while SMS/text is chosen by 17%. 

But texts are getting more popular: 83% of consumers read texts sent to them by businesses in the last 12 months, and 74 percent found them helpful. 

Of those who received text messages, 39% were motivated to do so by a deal being offered. And of those who have received messages in the last year, 20% have made at least one purchase. 

YouGov Plc surveyed 507 small-medium size decision makers at firms with 500 employees or less, and 1,112 consumers in September 2022. 

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