Grow Your Business

Support Small Businesses to Boost Your Local Economy

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    • Laura Nelson

      Vice President, Small Business Banking
      Nov 02 2023

Support Small Businesses to Boost Your Local Economy

Author: Laura Nelson, Vice President, Small Business Banking

Nestled between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is the most important holiday shopping day for your community: Small Business Saturday, a day to celebrate and support small businesses and all they do for their communities.

Shopping at local small businesses is an excellent way to help your community thrive and invest directly in your local economy. In fact, $0.68 of every dollar spent at a small business stays within that community, according to a 2022 study.

This year Small Business Saturday is Nov. 25, and we invite you to participate by supporting small businesses where you live and work. To help you get started, I’ve gathered valuable tips ways to support small businesses during the holiday season and throughout the year.

Making Small Business Saturday Successful

Start by asking your friends and family to compile their Christmas wish lists with one caveat – they can only include items from local small businesses. This will not only bolster local enterprises, but also will become a delightful treasure hunt for your loved ones as they explore those stores. Then, begin shopping and crossing items off their lists on Small Business Saturday.

If it’s too late to go that route, consider checking local before buying. Many items available at big-box stores can be found at local shops. Do your research online then visit local stores before purchasing. Your hometown shop may offer competitive prices, especially when you factor in shipping costs.

When the big-ticket items you need can only be found online or at national chains, make a conscious effort to shop local for other gifts on your list. Think of teachers, coworkers, friends, service providers and your secret Santa and visit local small businesses to find one-of-a-kind gifts.

And turn Small Business Saturday into a day-long celebration. Spend the morning strolling through your downtown district and browsing in quaint boutiques, then hit your favorite mom and pop diner for lunch. Continue your shopping spree and wrap up the day by relaxing at a local pub.  

More Local Holiday Shopping Ideas

In an age where gift card gifts are plentiful – especially for those hard-to-buy-for friends and relatives – consider purchasing them from your Chamber of Commerce or from local shops and restaurants.

My friends and family love unusual gifts that I discover in small stores, including made-in-Nebraska (or Texas or Kansas) items, scented candles, bath bombs, sweets or handmade creations. Let these hidden gems inspire you to put a new spin on your traditional white elephant gift exchange by requiring that all gifts and goodies be purchased at local shops.

When buying gifts for employees or clients, make them unique by sourcing them from local companies. And when DIYing your gifts, be sure to support family-owned hardware stores or local craft shops.

Year-Round Dedication to Small Businesses

Don’t quit shopping at small and local businesses once the holidays end.

There are many ways to support local establishments throughout the year like shopping boutiques for birthday gifts, visiting area wineries and dining at local restaurants. When organizing work meetings, cater lunches from local eateries – it fosters their growth and exposes more people to the delightful cuisine available in your town.

Be sure to spread the word about your favorite local businesses. Ask for a couple of business cards and give them to your friends. Take to social media to sing the praises of your local purchases. Like the social media pages of your favorite stores and share posts with your network.

Small businesses are the backbones of our communities. When we support them, we support the business owners and their employees while also keeping our hard-earned money local. Seize the opportunity to make a positive impact where you live by supporting small businesses, during the holiday season and throughout the entire year.

The articles in this blog are for informational purposes only and not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations. When making decisions about your financial situation, consult a financial professional for advice. Articles are not regularly updated, and information may become outdated.