Frequently Asked
Questions

  • What is Shop Small®?

    Shop Small is a nationwide movement to celebrate small businesses every day and to help communities thrive. As the founding partner, American Express has created resources that can help businesses stand out as well as reach and attract new customers throughout the year.

    What is Small Business Saturday®?

    Small Business Saturday is a day dedicated to supporting small businesses across the country. Founded by American Express in 2010, this day is celebrated each year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. This year SBS will be celebrated on November 25, 2017. Learn more at ShopSmall.com/About.

    When is Small Business Saturday?

    Small Business Saturday is celebrated on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. This year’s Small Business Saturday is November 25, 2017.

    Why should I participate in the Shop Small Movement?

    As a consumer, you’re a key part in helping small businesses thrive. By shopping or dining at small businesses throughout the year, you’re showing your support for the small businesses in your community.

    How can I participate?

    As a consumer, you can support small business in lots of ways. You can go shopping or dining at a local small business, invite friends to shop with you, or share on your social networks where you #ShopSmall. Find new small businesses in your community through the Shop Small Map at ShopSmallNow.com.

    What resources are available to me as a small business owner?

    As a small business owner, American Express provides free tools and resources including in-store signage, social media posts and email templates to help you promote your business. If you would like to promote your business year-round, you can find materials at ShopSmall.com/YearRound.

    In addition, OPEN Forum® is an online resource that provides insights and tips to help grow your business through articles, videos, member-exclusive content and connections to other business owners.

    If you are a qualifying American Express® Card accepting small merchant, you can unlock additional value. Learn more here.

    I have a question that isn’t addressed by the FAQs on this page. Where can I go for help?

    If the FAQs on this page do not address your questions, please feel free to call our Shop Small servicing center at 1-800-235-8916. We are available from 9am to 6pm ET, Monday through Friday. You can also email us at ShopSmallHelp@aexp.com.
  • What is a Neighborhood Champion?

    Neighborhood Champions are business associations, state and local chambers of commerce, small business and other community organizers who are willing to commit to organizing events or activities to rally their neighborhoods for Small Business Saturday.

    How do I become a Neighborhood Champion?

    To become a Neighborhood Champion, visit ShopSmall.com/Rally. You’ll be asked to provide some information about yourself, the local businesses that you will engage, and your plans to host an event/activity for the day. Just be sure your submission complies with the Terms of Participation.

    What resources are available to me as a Neighborhood Champion?

    Small Business Saturday Event Guides are available to anyone participating in Small Business Saturday activities. In addition, Neighborhood Champions will receive periodic Countdown Emails filled with helpful planning tips and resources inspired by past Neighborhood Champions. Neighborhood Champions will also receive a Small Business Saturday Event Kit with branded merchandise that they can use for events to help their community celebrate the day. The Small Business Saturday Event Kits are available while supplies last. See full Terms of Participation for more details.

    What are key dates for the program in 2017?

    June 28: Program launch, application opens

    November 6: Application period ends

    June 28 – November 6: Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis

    Mid-October: Distribution of Small Business Saturday Event Kits begins for approved participants

    November 25: Small Business Saturday!

    Where do I go to sign up or learn more?

    ShopSmall.com/Rally (for Neighborhood Champion application)

    ShopSmall.com (for general information about Small Business Saturday)

    How do I find out if I’m eligible to become a Neighborhood Champion?

    Please refer to the Eligibility Criteria section of the Terms of Participation for more details.

    What types of businesses qualify for my Neighborhood Champion submission?

    Please be sure to list the names of 10 qualifying small businesses in your local area. Please refer to the Qualifying Small Business Criteria section of the Terms of Participation for more details.

    What type of plan do I have to include in my Neighborhood Champion submission?

    Please provide a summary that describes the event you’ll organize to rally your community for Small Business Saturday (250 word maximum). Please refer to the Plan Criteria section of the Terms of Participation for more details.

    What can I do to rally my neighborhood for Small Business Saturday®?

    Host an event: organize an event for your community like a block party, a street fair, a scavenger hunt or a special breakfast to mobilize shoppers for the day. Reach out to your local government and let them know what you're planning!

    Provide entertainment and activities to draw people to attend: get a local band or DJ to play music, organize activities like face painting or a costume contest, or set up a photo booth on-site to make for family fun!

    Make it easy for people to get to your event: arrange for free parking to be provided in your community or free transportation to your event, so more people are able to attend.

    Decorate: show your spirit around your town with Small Business Saturday decorations including banners and balloons with special tote bags for attendees.

    Invite local officials and other local celebrities to participate in your event: reach out to the mayor, councilperson, or other local officials to attend your event. Think about people who are celebrities around town and invite them to participate.

    Involve local businesses: invite local businesses to set up pop-up shops or tables to promote their goods and services. Design the event to drive consumers into their stores by encouraging business owners to offer special promotions on the day.

    Promote your event: spread the word to your local media and encourage the press to attend and cover the event. Invite a local radio station to send radio personalities to attend, set up a table or play music. And don’t forget to promote on social media and spread the word around your town!

    What are some important considerations for holding an event?

    Access: can people get there by public transportation? Is parking available? Would it be possible to offer free parking? How do you get media there? Should you give media advance access?

    Foot traffic: how much foot traffic does the area get? Is it a neighborhood that typically empties out over a holiday weekend?

    Logistics: is it an area that will be too crowded on a holiday weekend for the type of event you're planning? Are you going to have enough room to set up all of the events and activities that you've planned? Is there adequate space for the press and any performers?

    Appeal: is there a location in your community that has particular significance, like a town green, where the location itself could be part of the draw?

    Weather: if all or part of your event will be outdoors, do you have a contingency plan for bad weather?

    Promotion: have you informed local business owners that they too can host an event and participate in the day? You can come up with suggestions for them on your own or encourage them to get more information and sign up for free downloadable materials on ShopSmall.com.

    I have a question that isn’t addressed by the FAQs on this page. Where can I go for help?

    If the FAQs on this page do not address your questions, please feel free to call our Shop Small servicing center at 1-800-235-8916. We are available from 9am to 6pm ET, Monday through Friday. You can also email us at ShopSmallHelp@aexp.com.
  • What is a Corporate Supporter?

    A Corporate Supporter is a medium to large company that wants to show its support for small businesses. It is authorized by American Express to promote Small Business Saturday in its marketing channels to its customers, employees and communities.

    Who is eligible to be a Corporate Supporter?

    Medium and large sized companies are eligible to become Corporate Supporters.

    How do I become a Corporate Supporter?

    To become a Corporate Supporter, visit ShopSmall.com/MakeItOfficial and complete and submit an application indicating your interest and plans to support Small Business Saturday. We will review your application and respond within 2-3 weeks of receipt. Please be sure your application complies with the Terms of Participation

    What do I receive as a Corporate Supporter?

    American Express will provide you with marketing materials designed to promote Small Business Saturday in your various marketing channels, including digital banners, sample social posts and other marketing creative. American Express will also link to your company website on our ShopSmall.com Supporter page.

    Do I need to be an American Express Card Member or accept American Express Card for purchases in order to participate?

    No, you do not need to be an American Express Card Member or accept American Express Card for purchases to become a Corporate Supporter of Small Business Saturday.

    Your application form requires me to submit my plan to promote Small Business Saturday, but what if that plan changes?

    We ask you to submit a plan that you intend to execute and to make a good faith effort to follow through with that plan. But we understand that plans can change, and that’s fine as long as you continue to comply with our Terms of Participation.

    Is there a deadline to submit my application?

    Yes, all applications must be received by November 6, 2017 11:59 p.m. ET.

    I have a question that isn’t addressed by the FAQs on this page. Where can I go for help?

    If the FAQs on this page do not address your questions, please feel free to call our Shop Small servicing center at 1-800-235-8916. We are available from 9am ET to 6pm ET, Monday through Friday. You can also email us at ShopSmallHelp@aexp.com.