Independent retailers who boosted sales during Small Business Saturday and Black Friday are urging other c-stores to plan ahead and take part next year.

Susan Connolly, business development manager for four Spar stores in Wiltshire, said her participation in Small Business Saturday, on December 6, resulted in a surprising increase in sales. “We didn’t think it would really make a difference but across all stores we had a 4% footfall increase and our sales increased by 6%,” she said.

“We’ll do it again next year, but bigger.” She encouraged more retailers to get behind it. “It’s definitely something they should plan for.”

The annual campaign launched in the UK last year and encourages consumers to shop locally to enforce the vital role small businesses play in the community. It enables retailers to create imaginative promotions and engage with other local shops.

Trudy Davies of Woosnam & Davies News in Llanidloes (pictured above), saw a 15% increase on December 6 compared with a normal Saturday. “We would be up this time of year because of Christmas but we’re even up on that,” she said.

“We did something different every day during the lead-up to Saturday, including goody bags, mince pies and sherry, and a free prize draw.”

While Black Friday caused mayhem in the multiples, Peter Wagg of News on the Wharf in London said offering 5% off most of his products, including tobacco, caused a 7% year-on-year hike in sales. “It’s a bit like a village fair,” he said. “If everyone joins in it creates a better atmosphere and more people benefit.”