How to support local small businesses throughout the year.
Small Business Saturday is an American shopping holiday that is always held on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, during one of the busiest shopping periods of the entire year. First invented by American Express as a nationwide advertising campaign on November 27th, 2010, this shopping holiday event has prompted and encouraged holiday shoppers around the world to support businesses that are small and local rather than heading to large corporate chains.
Here are some great ways to support small businesses over the 10 major holidays throughout the year:
Christmas is the perfect time of year where all the family members get together. What better situation to share with your friends and family the important role that small businesses play within the national economy? By doing so, you never know if you may be encouraging someone to become a future small business owner themselves, preparing to open up their own business and follow their passion, or putting a spark into the next generation of small business owners.
Start the New Year by telling a friend about a favorite local business you enjoy. With the amount of social media outlets these days it’s as easy as ever to tell friends about your favorite local spot. Even a small act such as a “Like” on the company’s page on Facebook, or sharing their Facebook page to spread the word about their business can make a huge difference without you having to spend a single cent.
Planning on taking your sweetheart out to a romantic dinner? Why not dine in a locally owned and operated restaurant? You could be surprised at the good food, great service, and you might even have a more intimate experience at a local restaurant where you are recognize as being a regular.
Need to buy some eggs to dye for Easter? Make sure to pay in cash. Did you know that often times credit card companies will charge business owners a processing fee for using their services? By using cash it saves the business owner from having to pay the fee that is usually made up for in price increases for consumers.
Didn’t your Mother ever tell you to recycle? This is a great way to make your mom proud while also contributing to small businesses! On Mother’s Day tell her how you brought your own shopping bags from home to buy groceries. Not only is this an environmentally conscious choice, it also saves business owners from having to buy more bags!
Over Memorial Day weekend, why not drink coffee at your favorite local coffeehouse? While there, take a moment to tell the owner how you heard about their business so that they know which of their advertising dollars are actually bringing in customers. If they aren’t on social media, why not talk to the owner or manager about promoting their business?
Father’s Day is a perfect time to work with your dad on a house project. How about buying your home improvement gear or essentials from the local hardware store? Local businesses depend on local consumers to keep them in business. They don’t have the amount of money that big chains do in order to keep them in business, so shop locally!
Fourth of July
After preparing your BBQ food list for Fourth of July, buy your groceries from a local grocer! Small businesses rely on word of mouth to bring in traffic. If you’ve heard of a local grocer that has fresh produce, why not go check them out and stock up on groceries from someone local?
The sun is out for Labor Day so how about taking a trip to the local the farmer’s market? Farmer’s markets are great places full of activities, various cuisines, local crafts and merchandise. This could be a great activity that gets you outdoors and supporting local labor!
Thanksgiving is the time to be thankful. As soon as Thanksgiving is over, it’s also great to plan ahead for the holiday season! Avoid the mall completely. Look online at customized items from places like Etsy, an ecommerce marketplace, which will tell you the city and information of each shop. Not only will you be supporting local business, you’ll have really neat, unique gifts for your friends and family.
How do you support small local business over the holidays? Do you have a favorite local restaurant, bookstore or coffee shop?