Despite the shorter shopping season this year, Small Business Saturday proved successful last weekend, as shoppers reported spending a whopping $5.7 billion with independent merchants nationwide.
Many local shops were expecting the influx in business as they had seen similar results in recent years, and statistics show that awareness was up and shoppers were out. According to a survey by the National Federation of Independent Business and American Express, small businesses had a successful day last weekend.
Consumer awareness of Small Business Saturday jumped to 71 percent this year, a four percent increase from last year. Also, nearly half of those aware of the day set aside for local business participated in the shopping.
Small Business Saturday was not the sole day for local deals either. Some small stores, like Ritzy Ragz and Thingz of Downtown Turlock, are continuing the deals this weekend.
The consignment boutique’s two extra days of deals started on Friday, with their Black Friday Déjà Vu event. The store will offer 50 percent off all clothing on Saturday.
Main Street Antiques at 208 E. Main St. will be continuing sales from dealer 13 through Christmas. Alquist Arms at 120 S. Center St. will soon be featuring a 12 days of Christmas sale, and Envy Fine Clothing at 227 E. Main St. is continuing sales in-store. Envy will also be hosting an Ugg representative on Saturday to help customers “bling” out their Ugg boots. Any customers who purchased Ugg from Envy in 2013 will receive the “bling” treatment for free.
Perhaps the continued sales are a testament to the generosity of local owners, or perhaps they are a reflection of the impact of Small Business Saturday. Forty-one governors have now recognized the day across the nation, including California Gov. Jerry Brown (D).
“In an uncertain economy, America’s small businesses have remained a beacon – creating good jobs and supporting the families they employ and the communities around them,” said NFIB CEO Dan Danner. “We are very pleased that so many Americans sought to give back by shopping small this Small Business Saturday.”
Hannah’s Boutique of downtown Turlock thanked customers on Small Business Saturday by writing to Facebook followers, “Thank you for supporting your local small businesses. By doing so you aren't buying high executives new jets, you are allowing moms to put their daughters in ballet, send their son to football camp, and to show their children they can accomplish anything they put their mind to. So thank you again for shopping with our small, local businesses.”
Small businesses are often quick to thank loyal, local customers, and it does not go without notice from shoppers.
“We hope that support of small firms, retailers, restaurants and other independent businesses continues throughout the holiday season and all year round,” said Danner. “Continued support of this vital sector is one important way to ensure our economy fully recovers and a healthy private sector is restored.”