Today is Small Business Saturday in Saline

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 11/30/2019 - 01:42
Thomas Oloff strings lights at The 109 Cultural Exchange, home of Saline Main Street. The space, located at 109 W. Michigan Ave., will be open to guests on Small Business Saturday .

Saturday is Small Business Saturday in Saline - and all over America. Small Business Saturday is the decidedly cozier and friendlier version of Black Friday, the frenzied start to the American big-box business Christmas shopping season.

There are plenty of reasons to shop local this holiday season. Every time consumers visit local coffee shops to sip a latte, buy a handbag at a boutique or patronize the farmer's market at Liberty School, they are supporting a small business.

Small Business Saturday is a counterpart to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The first event was created by American Express in conjunction with the nonprofit National Trust for Historic Preservation. Since its inception, many small business groups, merchants and politicians have touted the event and the Shop Small¨ mantra. The idea is that when small businesses thrive, communities and individuals thrive along with them. The Small Business Administration says that, since 1995, small businesses have generated 66 percent of all new jobs in the United States.

There are a number of big reasons to shop small. One can start around the holidays and then continue all year long.

  • Shopping small businesses helps give back to the community directly. According to Civic Economics, a strategic planning business, on average 48 percent of each purchase made at independent businesses is recirculated locally through tax money and other support.
  • Small business owners often strive to provide personalized, hands-on customer service. Repeat business is key to their survival, so they want to ensure shoppers are happy.
  • Small businesses, since they are not beholden to corporate oversight in terms of what they sell, have greater flexibility. That allows them to offer a diverse product selection.
  • Small business owners often live nearby, and they're the people you see in town, schools and elsewhere in the local community. Many consumers are comforted to know they're supporting their neighbors, especially during the holiday season. Supporting local businesses is easy. And shoppers who like what they see can share the good news with others on social media.
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