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Covid-19 doubles the number of outdoor market stall traders across the UK

1-minute read

Simply Business

Simply Business

27 September 2021

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Covid-19 doubles the number of outdoor market stall traders across the UK

  • Between 2020 and 2021, the number of market stall traders nearly doubled across the country, increasing by 92%
  • With the increased popularity of outdoor marketplaces and as a response to Covid-19, new market traders are quickly appearing
  • Despite the fact that unemployment persists in a few industries, most types of small businesses are experiencing a recovery

With many small businesses closed due to the effects of the pandemic, Simply Business – one of the UK’s largest providers of small business insurance reported a 92% increase in market traders in the United Kingdom.

An analysis of the trends between 2020 and 2021 reveal a significant increase in market stall traders. It is the fastest growing industry across small businesses so far this year. Other industries that have also seen more than a 50% increase are caterers, online retailers, and home baking businesses.

The industries that appear to have benefited the most from the pandemic are those related to food or the arts. New photographers, bakers, and landscapers are emerging all over the United Kingdom.

The number of new market stall traders across the country remains the most prominent among the SME community. Market traders have found a thriving niche in the UK economy, thanks to the pandemic's newfound popularity of food stalls and outdoor dining.

Alan Thomas, CEO at Simply Business, commented: “The boost in market stall traders is a reassuring sign of an economic rebound for the UK. It’s small businesses like these that are going to play the most important role in bringing back our economy from Covid-19.

“Our report showed optimistic results of new businesses emerging in the food and artistic sectors. Self-employed jobs are also finally seeing a rise as we distance ourselves from the pandemic.

“We’re thrilled to be doing our part in this process by protecting so many new businesses in their journey. It’s encouraging to see so many new businesses start up as the country attempts to recover economically from Covid-19. This is why we’re offering one entrepreneur the chance to win £25,000 to either set up a new business or rebuild their own business.”


Methodology: Trends from Jun-Dec 2020 vs Jan-Jun 2021

Created Year2020Calculation2021
Market trader86492%1658
Online retailer90655%1402
Home baking154150%2310
Garden maintenance / landscape gardener307740%4303
Cake maker and decorator91537%1250
Car valeter54335%733

For further information, please contact:

Frank PR
[email protected]

About Simply Business

Simply Business is one of the UK’s biggest business insurance providers, specialising in public liability insurance for SMEs and insuring over 900,000 small businesses and landlords across Britain.

Launched in 2005, Simply Business provides an online brokerage service, delivering policies tailored to individual business requirements. Using the power of tech and data to create the best possible customer experiences, Simply Business employs over 800 people across offices in London, Northampton, and Boston in the US.

Owing to its internal underwriting capability, Simply Business can cover over 1,000 trade types – ranging from plumbers to accountants to dog walkers. An accredited B Corp for their positive social impact, Simply Business has also been voted the Sunday Times Best Company To Work For twice in a row.

We create this content for general information purposes and it should not be taken as advice. Always take professional advice. Read our full disclaimer

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