5 Tips to Plan Your Small Business Saturday Shopping Day
The Thanksgiving holiday weekend is loaded with opportunities for consumers to take advantage of sales at the big box and massive online retailers. But let’s not forget about the local small businesses amidst all of the chaos.
According to the Small Business Administration, there are nearly 90,000 small retail businesses in Ohio, most of which survive on a very narrow margin. Small, local retailers often cannot afford to pay for a tidal wave of advertising to lure you into their stores.
Small Business Saturday is a way to remind us to support them when shopping for holiday gifts. Plus, as inflation continues to drain your wallet, shopping small is a great way to save money, find more personal gifts, and support the local economy. Here are 5 tips to help you plan your Small Business Saturday shopping.
- Make a list and set a budget.
We have to watch the money this year so it’s more important than ever to know what you’re buying for whom and how much you have to spend on each gift.
- Do your homework.
Using the list and budget you made, hit the web and social media to research which small businesses in your area carry the items you want.
- Plan your shopping day.
From your research, take note of the address and hours of operation for your favorite small shops and try to hit as many as possible with each stop.
Knowing the business hours for each one is important – remember many businesses are still struggling with staffing issues and may limit their hours.
Parking should be in your plan as well. Try to find parking closest to more than one shop at a time.
- Cash Is King!
Many people don’t even carry cash anymore. But remember that paying with cash keeps more of the money in the pocket of the merchant. Slim profit margins can be eaten up by credit card processing fees, costing small businesses a major chunk of their overall revenue. Using cash also benefits the community because the money stays in the local economy longer.
- Don’t forget service companies.
Besides holiday shopping, you can get some projects done ahead of the holidays – like painting, fall lawn cleanups, or deep house cleaning jobs. In the spirit of Small Business Saturday, hire small, locally-owned service providers for these jobs.
Ask your family or neighbors who they use, and check your local chamber of commerce website for a list of local businesses – as always check out Google reviews and check them out yourself before asking for an estimate.
“Shop Small” shouldn’t be a mere tagline in an ad campaign paid for by one of the largest credit card companies on the planet (American Express started the campaign). It should instead be a way to help insulate our local business community against the potential recession that is all too likely. Spend your money within your community and support your neighbors, your town, as well as the best financial interests of yourself and your family.
Here are some helpful local resources:
Business Network International (Miami Valley of Ohio Region)
Xenia Area Chamber of Commerce
Beavercreek Area Chamber of Commerce
South Metro Regional Chamber of Commerce
For more, Google “(insert your town) chamber of commerce)