City shop owners hope Small Business Saturday will boost sales

Small Business Saturday crucial during pandemic

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - It has been a tough year for everyone, especially small business owners. Many of them had to deal with COVID-19 restrictions in the spring that brought their businesses to a grinding halt.

Some of them must now deal with newer restrictions because of another wave of rising COVID-19 cases.

But on Small Business Saturday, many business owners remain optimistic.

Jack Steiner owns Merchants on Broad.

“We have a lot of fun unique products. Funny mugs, socks, things like that,” said Steiner.

But for much of the year, it was no laughing matter as COVID-19 wreaked havoc on small businesses.

Steiner says loyal customers helped him survive.

“We’re blessed to have a really good following being here,” said Steiner. “The retail went away for months and months and it’s just started to pick back up.”

He’s now counting on Small Business Saturday to provide an even bigger boost as the holiday shopping season kicks off.

“The time will tell in the next couple of weeks. I’m sure with everything ramping up with increasing infections it’s going to be a little tougher, but we just take care of it and stay safe,” said Steiner.

Rick Britton, the owner of Bingham and Broad, says the holiday shopping season can make up for sluggish sales that happened earlier in the year.

“The last quarter of the year takes care of the first three quarters,” said Britton.

Britton said people appear to be doing their holiday shopping earlier this year.

Memphian Melissa Hoffmann says she participates in Small Business Saturday every year and encourages other shoppers to do the same.

“I think it’s always important -- this year in particular,” said Hoffmann. “I know a lot of businesses are suffering but I think every year at the holidays supporting small businesses for your gift-buying is important.”

In addition to in-person sales, many small businesses are also offering special deals online for Small Business Saturday.

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