Millions of us have shopping plans this weekend. Black Friday kicks off the holiday shopping season, followed up by Cyber Monday. The month between Thanksgiving and Christmas is crucial for many businesses because such a large chuck of their sales happen in that time.

Most of the attention goes to major retailers with brick-and-mortar stores and/or an online presence. Although these retailers make the most noise, they make up just a fraction of the total businesses in the United States.

Shoppers have started to recognize Small Business Saturday, which follows Black Friday deals at the big retailers, and for good reason.

According to the Small Business Administration, the 30.2 million small businesses in the United States make up 99.9 percent of U.S. businesses. Small businesses employ 58.9 million people, which make up 47.5 percent of U.S. workers. Those numbers are pretty impressive!

Small businesses are growing in this strong economy, especially thanks to tax reform. Businesses all over the country have announced raises, better benefits and more investment in their employees thanks to the extra money employees earn and get to keep.

Small businesses all over the country are meeting needs by providing services and creating jobs and opportunities for others. Those with the courage to chase dreams, become entrepreneurs, and help those around them, are what help make America thrive!

This weekend, we thank small business owners and entrepreneurs for their contributions. Whether it’s the local tire shop, a mom-and-pop restaurant or a small retail chain, these companies grow our economy and strengthen our communities.

Read about a local business owner who is helping his community through his business.