Published On: Mon, Nov 20th, 2017

OPINION: Make Shopping Small Your Holiday Tradition

By Acting SBA Regional Administrator Carl Knoblock

Saturday, Nov. 25, is Small Business Saturday® – a day to celebrate and support small businesses for all they contribute to our local communities. Did you know that since 1995, small businesses generated 64 percent of new jobs, and paid 44 percent of the total United States private payroll? When we shop small –spending our money at locally-owned small businesses within our neighborhoods and towns – we help create two out of three net new local jobs.

Across the nation we are already seeing advertisements and news stories about which major chain is opening their doors on Black Friday, or even pushing employees to work on Thanksgiving Day! What you might not hear about, but should, are the mom and pop shops, the corner bakeries, and other locally-owned businesses that are competing with these national and international conglomerates. This holiday season, let’s recommit to keeping more of our hard-earned money local by supporting our neighborhood champions, America’s small businesses.

When you shop local, you’re putting your money right back into your town and neighborhood. Compared to chain stores, locally-owned businesses recycle a much larger share of their revenue back into the local economy, enriching the whole community, which means more money for local police and fire departments as well as schools and other community supported infrastructure and services. Do the math: Small businesses donate 250% more than larger businesses to non-profits and community causes. And, for every $100 you spend at a locally-owned business, roughly $68 stays in your local economy compared to only $43 from the big guys.

This Small Business Saturday®, visit your Main Street merchants to find unique, handmade gifts, and unsurpassed service that you won’t find at a big-box retailer. Afterward, dine at a locally-owned restaurant, an industry employing 14 million Americans and generating $709.2 billion in sales – equal to 4 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product. Many small restaurants are also more eco-friendly by serving local products.

To continue the entrepreneurial spirit of small businesses, join me and the rest of the U.S. Small Business Administration to learn how small businesses are preparing for Small Business Saturday® and the upcoming holiday season.  SBA Eastern Pennsylvania Director Antonio (Tony) Leta and other SBA officials recently toured Metta Relaxation, a small business that received SBA assistance through Lehigh University’s Small Business Development Center.

Be sure to join us all in shopping and dining small on Saturday, Nov. 25. And, while you’re out shopping, make sure to tell us about it on social media using #SmallBizSat and #ShopSmall to amplify your support.

For more information on local Small Business Saturday events in your area, check out: www.sba.gov/saturday.

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