The holiday season is around the corner. It’s time for good cheer, hot chocolate, twinkling lights, family and giving the perfect gift. Your holiday shopping may look different this year due to the pandemic, but local businesses can help you find Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa gifts for everyone on your list.
New Holiday Shopping Habits
Half of United States shoppers believe the pandemic will change how they shop this season, with more focus on online or contactless shopping. Many people plan to forgo long Black Friday lines and the frenzy of Super Saturday.
Along with a shift in shopping habits, the pandemic has brought a renewed interest in shopping local. In fact, 66% of shoppers said they plan to shop more at local small businesses this year.
There are many benefits to supporting the local businesses that make your community unique. Why should you shop local during the most wonderful time of the year? And if you’re a local business, how can you attract holiday shoppers?
Let’s dive into the benefits of shopping within your community and explore how people can support their favorite local businesses this year.
4 Reasons to Shop Local
1. Keep Money in the Local Economy
Shopping locally means intentionally spending money at locally-owned shops and restaurants. About two-thirds of every dollar spent at small businesses stays in the local economy, according to a 2018 Small Business Impact Study from American Express. When you make a purchase, approximately $0.67 of every dollar remains in the community.
When customers shop local, they also support their community’s roads, emergency responders, libraries and public transportation options. Sales tax revenue from purchases made at small businesses goes toward the local government. That money funds amenities within the community.
With the pandemic, our local businesses and economies need support now more than ever. Help keep your favorite small businesses afloat by making a commitment to shop local.
2. Support Your Neighbors’ Jobs
There are 37.1 million small businesses in the United States, and they employ about 60.6 million Americans. Shopping in your area supports those people and their families! These individuals are your friends, neighbors and fellow community members. Further, local businesses offer employment opportunities for people in the community. Buying from local businesses helps keep people employed at a time when jobs are more important than ever.
3. Find One-of-a-Kind Gifts
Are you looking for a unique gift? While shopping locally, you’ll discover items you can’t find anywhere else. In Branson, there are many places to find novelty Christmas gifts and decorations. By shopping at small businesses in your area, you can rest assured knowing you won’t give someone a gift they’ve already received.
Many stores also offer holiday gift wrapping, so you don’t have to! If you don’t feel like heading into the store, shop online locally at independent bookstores, boutiques and gift shops.
4. Add Character to Your Community
Local businesses affect the atmosphere of where you live. They make cities vibrant. Having a variety of local businesses can increase your satisfaction with your city and community. Local businesses give customers a wider selection of choices, and they can easily tailor products based on customer interest.
For Shoppers: Best, Local Holiday Gift Ideas
Shopping local this holiday season is more important than ever to help your favorite businesses and your community. Looking for a way to support businesses in Branson, MO, and the surrounding areas this year?
Here are some holiday gift ideas:
- Season passes. Does your friend love Silver Dollar City? Is your family all about Branson’s live shows? You can purchase season tickets ahead of time, so when it’s safe to go, you’ll be ready.
- Gift cards. A gift card to your loved one’s favorite place isn’t a cop-out gift. This year, it’s one way to support local businesses by providing them with more cash flow.
- Personalized holiday cards. Purchase or print your holiday cards from a local maker or print shop.
- Books. Support independent bookstores by purchasing from them instead of larger sellers.
- Subscription services. If activities are your gift of choice, look for local businesses that have taken their services online. You may still be able to give your friend a few dance or yoga classes.
For Businesses: Attracting Holiday Shoppers
The holiday season is a significant sales opportunity for 69% percent of United States small businesses. Many retailers experience their highest sales this quarter from the influx of holiday purchases.
How is the state of holiday shopping looking this year? Three in five United States shoppers plan to do half or more of their holiday shopping online this year. However, 60% of consumers plan to shop at local retailers—which is good news for small businesses.
What can your business do to attract holiday shoppers? First, you need to make them feel safe. Continue to communicate with customers through social media, your website, and signage at your store about safety procedures. You will also want to start or continue offering curbside pickup, delivery, free shipping or appointment-only reservations as the holidays approach.
After you address customer safety, it’s time to show off your products!
- Make sure your website is up to date. Customers will be shopping online more than ever this holiday season. Your website should showcase an updated inventory and must be working properly.
- Spend more time on social media. You may need to reach customers in new ways this year. Take some time to plan out holiday social posts that feature your best products.
- Create a gift guide. A fun way to display your products is to create a holiday gift guide. You can publish it on your website or share it on social media.
- Offer virtual experiences. Many small businesses are finding ways to take the in-store experience online. You could create a video tour of your store or go live on Instagram with new holiday merchandise.
- Get creative. How can you meet shoppers where they are? Use outdoor sales to bring your wares closer to customers passing by on the sidewalk. Or try a brilliant window display that captures attention and offers shoppable QR codes.
Branson, MO is known for its shopping and attractions. Are you ready to move your business to Branson?
Contact Commercial One Brokers today. We can help you find commercial real estate for your small business.
Browse our listings to see what’s currently on the market.