What is Small Business Saturday? Think of it as Black Friday’s awkward cousin. You see, we are rapidly approaching that dreaded day. You husbands out there know what day I’m talking about. It’s when your wives (or maybe you) actually look forward to waking up at 3am to go stand in line at some huge store so you can get some ridiculous deal or buy a massive TV for $100. Black Friday has slowly morphed into a national holiday and is now bleeding over into Thursday…you know Thanksgiving. There was a time when everything was closed on Thanksgiving and you didn’t start your Black Friday shopping until around 6am Friday.
Well, those days are gone. Now people are fighting over Black Friday deals. The thing is, most of these deals are at big chain stores. I’m talking Walmart, Best Buy, Sears, etc. These massive chains already get the lion share of market year around. That’s where Small Business Saturday comes in. It was started back in 2010 and is intended to encourage people to shop at small and local stores.
If you own a small business then I don’t have to tell you what impact these big chain stores have on small business. They have driven many out of business. I’m not going to argue the validity of big chain stores because, at the end of the day, the free market determines who survives and who doesn’t. My local hardware store gives great service. When I go in they meet me at the door, show me what I’m looking for and even tell me how to use it. When I go into the chain hardware stores I can’t even find anyone to help me. And if I do find someone..they are clueless.
Therefore, you shouldn’t really need motivation to shop at your local small businesses. Small Business Saturday exists because we don’t shop nearly enough at those businesses. The people who own these businesses are your neighbors. There isn’t a CEO in France who actually runs the company. The “CEO” goes to your church and maybe their kids plays little league with yours. It’s vitally important that we support these businesses. Small Business Saturday aims to focus your attention for one day on these local small businesses.
The big chain stores earn a good portion of their yearly sales on Black Friday. It can make the difference for their bottom line. Of course, the big chain stores aren’t exactly hurting. So the reality is that Black Friday can help determine just how much profit they make and how big their CEO’s bonus check is.
But for a small business owner, Small Business Saturday could mean the difference between their shop staying open the next year. It could mean that their kid gets braces or if they can afford to pay for their college. When you shop here on Small Business Saturday you are making a real difference in the lives of these small business owners.