Consumers seek products and services of smaller businesses

Recent data has shown a meteoric rise in consumers turning to independent, local shops and tradesmen over recent years.

Insurance provider Simply Business has identified a consistent rise in private small businesses over the past five years through annual analysis on its micro-business and sole trader customers.

Through its comprehensive data, the company has shown that consumers are backing away from chains and multinational corporations in favour of independent traders, with the number across the UK rising by 110 per cent in the last five years.

The North West has emerged as the most popular location to open up on the high street with an 89 per cent rise in independent retailers there since 2010.

In addition to supporting their local shops, Britons also prefer to use independent small businesses for services. The findings demonstrate a rise across a range of professions since 2010 from manicurists (115 per cent) and hairdressers (79 per cent) to domestic cleaners (118 per cent) and builders (86 per cent).

Jason Stockwood, CEO of Simply Business says that it is pleasing to see support for small businesses in recent years, and that Small Business Saturday is a great initiative to put small and micro-businesses in the spotlight, but highlights that it is vital that public awareness remains high all year round.

‘The tide seems to be turning, away from chains and big corporations to local, independent businesses but consumers must sustain their support to ensure these businesses don’t just survive but thrive,’ he adds.

‘Our nation’s small businesses play a huge role in local communities and have a meaningful impact on the broader economy, so I hope to see this trend continue for years to come.’

Further reading on independent shops

Ben Lobel

Ben Lobel

Ben Lobel was the editor of from 2010 to 2018. He specialises in writing for start-up and scale-up companies in the areas of finance, marketing and HR.