You may have missed it, but sandwiched in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday last week was Small Business Saturday.
If you haven't heard of this yet, it's no wonder. Small Business Saturday is a new initiative which was established just this year and it didn't receive much publicity.
Whether you know about it or not, it's a worthy concept. According to the Small Business Saturday website: smallbusinesssaturday.com, there are four good reasons for patronizing small businesses:
First, for every $100 spent at local small businesses, $68 returns to the community;
Second, small businesses employ half of all private sector employees;
Third, small businesses represent 99.7 percent of all employer firms;
And, fourth, during every year of the last decade, 60 percent to 80 percent of new jobs were generated by small businesses.
The November-December gift-buying frenzy can account for half of merchants' total annual sales.
Our economy is still struggling but there are signs of recovery that we hope will boost Christmas sales this year.
So if you're loosening your purse strings a bit and you are increasing your spending this year, try to keep your local merchants in mind when shopping. Our local merchants and small businesses are there throughout the year donating to local projects and charities and supporting our schools and local youth sports teams. They also pay local taxes to fund our government services and most importantly they provide jobs - a commodity that still remains scarce in our local economy.
You may have missed Small Business Saturday, but if you haven't completed your holiday shopping, try to keep much of your spending local and patronize the small businesses. It may be easier to turn on the computer and get out the credit card, but we'll all benefit more if you spend your money here.