Saturday, November 24, 2012

Support Small Business Saturday! Find a Local Store!

Today is Small Business Saturday!  Yay!!!

Small Business Saturday gets such a small amount of media exposure.  A really, really tiny amount.  So miniscule, in fact, that unless your local news station does a story about it, you probably won't remember it's happening.

Even then, there's a chance that you'll be gung ho about heading off to support small businesses, but have absolutely no clue who is participating, or even what the big deal is all about.

That's what I want to do today.

I want to help you find small businesses in your area without having to get redirected about 5000 times.

Small Business Saturday is sort of like Black Friday for the little guys... minus the insane shoving, rudeness, and heart attack inducing stress levels.  The frightened employees, cringing every time a customer comes within a three foot radius, are also absent.

Come to think of it, maybe it's not much like Black Friday at all...

They do have deals, though.  And they can be really good ones.

So, what is Small Business Saturday?  

It's a day in which we can support small businesses within our community by taking our holiday shopping to them, rather than to big corporate entities.  To quote the Small Business Administration's Administrator, Karen Mills:
"Small businesses are the back bone of our communities. And when we shop small, we not only get great products and services, but we support our neighbors and strengthen our local economies." (SBA blog post)

Community support.  That's important, and it's something we tend to forget this time of year.  Funny that we should forget about helping each other during a season of hope and love, right?

Yay, capitalism!

Going on, though...

Small Businesses across the country will have sales today - just like the corporations did on Friday (and Thursday... sigh).  Indeed, many of these mom and pop stores have been preparing for months!

Where do I find these businesses, though?!

I found a national store locator online, that included stores in towns with under 4000 people.

Brief warning, though: it's an American Express store locator, so you can pretty much guarantee that it only lists stores that accept American Express cards.  (I'm not complaining about that, though, because it makes sense, after all.)

The National Federation of Independent Business has a small list of businesses, as well.  

It's not nearly as all-encompassing, and you have to scroll down to your state to see what they've listed. BUT!  The NFIB locator does have one great aspect to it that you won't find on the simplistic American Express locator...

It gives the business and address, of course, but it also explains "why you should patronize this small biz."  Bonus!

Oh, and another thing about the NFIB:  When you click the link above, you'll also see a link to get their mobile app.  Talk about useful!!!

You may also want to pull up your local newspaper or tv news site.  

Many times, the writers will include a list of local businesses that are participating in Small Business Saturday.

This is a much better option than the hell we all refer to as Black Friday, and it's happening today.  Get out there and support your local businesses, while grabbing up some great deals in the process!

That's what I'll be doing!

Are you a small business owner?  Feel free to leave your store name and address in a comment.  It's some extra exposure, after all!


  1. As a small business owner I love the idea of Small Business Saturday, but the corporations running it leave a bit of a bad taste in my mouth.

    My entire response is here:

    But here's the gist:
    "By all means, if you’re going to be buying gifts for the holidays (or anytime, really) go buy them from the small, local businesses that are engaged in your community. And if you really, really want to help them go to the ATM first and pay cash."

  2. That's an excellent point, and one that I thought about mentioning, but I was worried that I was being too cynical. Looks like I should've gone with my gut, right?

    Thank you for bringing this up, and I enjoyed the blog post. Paying cash *is* the best option. For everyone involved. Thanks for the extra info!!!

  3. This is a great idea rebecca. You open a door for small business owners. Count me in here i really like your idea.well said.