Small Business Saturday a boon for local sales

The day of shopping at small businesses was welcomed by Arkansas businesses.

Early numbers are looking good for the holiday shopping season. After Black Friday, today saw the continued growth of a "shop local" trend.

Local shoppers in The Heights community call small businesses in the area the bread and butter of the community. 

“We have had a wonderful holiday season so far and it's just getting started,” Kaitlin Minton with Steamroller Blues said. 

“A lot of people have come out today and are glad we're here and open,” Mickey Wilett, owner of The Social Type, added. 

Small Business Saturday was created by American Express to support mom and pop shops everywhere. 

It's been promoted every year since 2010 on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.

“The people that own the businesses you're shopping at on Small Business Saturday are people in your community, your neighbors and your friends,” said Anne Pace, owner of Kavanaugh Pharmacy. 

Small businesses play a vital role in helping the economy and the community thrive.

“If you give to your community, your community will give back to you. When you come in and your kid’s football team needs something for a fundraiser, I'm donating. If your kid’s school needs something, we're donating. Amazon is not going to donate to your football team,” Minton said. 

In the competition with online shopping, local stores sell themselves by offering a more personal experience. 

“It's hard to compete with that because large retailers sometimes have better prices online,” Pace said. 

But these three businesses, all located in Little Rock, are located where they are for a reason. 

"I love The Heights area, there's lots of walkers. Everyone brings their kids up here, there's always lots of foot traffic. It's a great area and community to be a part of. Everyone supports each other,” Willett said. 

The National Retail Federation forecasts that 71 million people shopped on Small Business Saturday this year in the U.S.

And out of those, three quarters of shoppers will make a point of hitting a small, local store to help the cause.

© 2017 KTHV-TV


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