NORTHBROOK, Ill., Nov. 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- This Saturday, Nov. 26, small businesses across the country will open their doors to mark Small Business Saturday, the annual event that encourages consumers to "shop small" and helps strengthen America's Main Street. Last year, 95 million people shopped smalli during Small Business Saturday, spending $16.2 billion at independent retailers and restaurants.
The 2016 Allstate/ USA TODAY Small Business Barometer shows small businesses have grown the same or more than last year - a positive sign for the future. In fact, the study showed a groundswell of optimism among local entrepreneurs, with more than half (53 percent) saying rapid innovation and an improving economy make now the best time ever to own a small business. Efforts like Small Business Saturday are critical to helping the country's small businesses meet one of their biggest challenges: attracting new customers. According to the Barometer, attracting new shoppers and clients is a challenge for more than one-third of small business owners. As a national network of small businesses, Allstate sought deeper insight into their challenges and opportunities. In 2016, the company released the first-of-its-kind Allstate/ USA TODAY Small Business Barometer - a study that combined a survey of more than 2,600 small business owners with a comprehensive catalog of public data to measure the strength of America's small business climate, both nationally and in 25 major metropolitan areas. The Small Business Barometer produced an overall score of 61 for the country's small business sector, which rates as "strong" on the Barometer's 0-100 scale. That ranking was reflected in the majority of cities across the country. Scores in 25 major markets ranged from 57 in New York to 64 in Indianapolis and Orlando. To learn more about the Barometer and to read about the small business environment in your city, please visit www.allstate.com/Barometer. About AllstateThe Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation's largest publicly held personal lines insurer, protecting approximately 16 million households from life's uncertainties through auto, home, life and other insurance offered through its Allstate, Esurance, Encompass and Answer Financial brand names. Now celebrating its 85th anniversary as an insurer, Allstate is widely known through the slogan "You're In Good Hands With Allstate ®." Allstate agencies are in virtually every local community in America. In 2015, The Allstate Foundation, Allstate, its employees and agency owners gave $36 million to support local communities. iForbes.com, http://www.forbes.com/sites/mikekappel/2016/11/21/the-big-benefits-of-small-business-saturday/2/#5b83a6c25eb2