Since the original Small Business Saturday in 2010, the event has blossomed into a multi-billion dollar economic boon for local and independent businesses across the nation. Shop Small is the motto and it takes place the Saturday after Thanksgiving, this year landing on Saturday, November 25th. The National Federation of Independent Business and Am Ex reported that the focus on the small shopping brought in billions of dollars last year for the local business owners. The revenue on this day has become the biggest single day for some small business owners, and one of the leading days for others. If you hurry, you can still take advantage of some downloadable materials to promote your business at this link.
American Express (not the smallest of businesses!) actually launched and promoted the first Small Business Saturday in 2010 to help fill the void for the Mom and Pop stores that were created in the shadow of the Big Box Bonanza and the emergence of Black Friday becoming such a shopping dynamo for bargain hunters. There seems to be an excellent synergy being created with Small Business Saturday: people are feeling good about contributing to their local economy – and to neighbors and associates that they actually know and see on a regular basis – while also realizing that they are getting great deals on quality products. What’s more, the small businesses are often the places where the unique or niche gift can be found that is different and usually more personalized than the kitsch or mass-produced products that the big boxes specialize in.
Small Biz Saturday is also making its impact known through e-commerce. Initially, this may seem somewhat at odds with the concept of small business support, but, let’s face it, in the 21st-century business environment, an e-commerce aspect of your trade is vital. In fact, many small businesses have thrived not despite e-commerce but because of it. The prohibitive costs of brick-and-mortar stores can sometimes curtail the momentum needed for small businesses to get off the ground. There are a significant number of independent entrepreneurs that initially began rolling with a strictly online business and then moved into a more traditional store to enhance their e-business presence. Of course, it can work in either direction. Bottom line, e-commerce and Small Business Saturday are not mutually exclusive. And even while the behemoth of Amazon is sending shivers down the collective business spine throughout much of the world, keep in mind that 83 percent of Amazon products involve a third-party retailer – many of them small business. They help alleviate storage, delivery and shipping problems and also help the independent business owners navigate the challenges of international commerce as they reach more than 185 countries.
So whether it be on a beautiful visit down the Main Street of Pittsford – with an ambiance that Amazon will never be able to duplicate – or through an e-commerce transaction where you buy hand-crafted jewelry from the Portland, Oregon entrepreneur that your friend turned you on to, support Small Business Saturday and beyond! Here’s a link to the many fine shopping establishments in Pittsford. Check them out and be sure that a good number will be participating in Small Business Saturday. Feed the ecosystem of the local economy – it will strengthen and reinforce your community and put us all on a positive trajectory as we roll in 2018!
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