With the Black Friday frenzy coming to an end, small businesses are hoping to reign in on some of the holiday shopping madness.
Local businesses say the popularity of shopping local for the holidays is growing.
“We’ve definitely seen a jump on Black Friday and Small Business Saturday,” said Mel Nelson, owner of the M2 Boutique on Southport Avenue.
Small Business Saturday was started in 2010 by American express. In part to help small retailers during the economic downturn and it continues to grow in popularity.
The US Small Business Administration estimated that customers spent nearly $5.5 billion nationwide in 2012 at small, independent stores during the event.
“America’s small business owners are on the front lines when it comes to creating new jobs and opportunities,” President Barack Obama said in a statement Tuesday. “Their efforts exemplify our Nation’s founding idea that no matter who you are, what you look like, where you come from, or whom you love, if you work hard, you can make it if you try. On Small Business Saturday, we rededicate ourselves to ensuring ours is a country where small businesses can thrive.”
As local shops gear up for Small Business Saturday, experts say shopping trends could be turning in favor of the “mom and pop” shops.
“Perhaps there’s an attitude change more toward people in your neighborhood helping them out,” said Shopping Deloitte Retail Expert Tom Compernolle.
And shoppers agree.
“I do think it’s great having local options where you don’t have to necessarily fight the traffic at the malls you can you know living in the neighborhood just kind of walk over,” said shopper Kristen Castelloni.
“I think people want to cheer on the small guy and not have everything look the same with the big retail boxes,” said shopper Carrie Mondschean.
In Chicago’s Lincoln Square neighborhood, the Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce said a recent study showed the benefits of customers buying into Small Business Saturday.
“For every dollar you typically spend at a local independent store about 60 percent of that stays within the community,” said Rudy Flores with the Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce.