Nine in ten retail and hospitality business owners believe it is important to support other local, independent operators amid a challenging time for the sector, according to research from American Express.
The report, which surveyed 250 senior decision makers at businesses with less than 50 employees in retail or hospitality, also showed that 85% of respondents actively promote other suppliers and small businesses local to them.
While over half (56%) of survey respondents said trading over the next six months would be "challenging", over a third (36%) said they were "optimistic", while a quarter (27%) even expressed excitement for the future.
A further three quarters (74%) of respondents said there was a strong sense of community among small businesses in their local area.
Dan Edelman, general manager of UK Merchant Services at American Express, said: "Our research offers further proof of how community-focused and generous of spirit small business owners are. They are facing hugely challenging times but appreciate and support the valuable contribution their fellow entrepreneurs make."
American Express launched the American Express Shop Small campaign in the UK in 2012 and continues to support of Small Business Saturday, which encourages Brits to back the country's small businesses.
From 3 - 12 December 2022, American Express cardmembers will receive a £5 statement credit when they spend £15 or more at participating small businesses across the UK at no cost to merchants.
It comes after hospitality operators accused the chancellor of failing to do "anything of consequence" for independent businesses in the Autumn Budget announced last week.