If battling crowds at the mall on Black Friday isn't your idea of holiday fun, you should consider shopping on Saturday instead.
Created in 2010 by American Express, Small Business Saturday celebrates the Shop Small movement to drive business to local merchants across the country.
The perks of patronizing Small Business Saturday may actually outweigh those of Black Friday.
Here are five reasons to shop on Saturday instead:
Avoid the crowds. Avoiding the maddening crowd should be priority number for one for cash-strapped families who just want to get in and get out, and tick some purchases off their "To Buy" list. Many small businesses offer champagne, home-baked goodies, and in-house bands to turn up the fun.
Support local establishments. Small merchants have found themselves caught in the crosshairs of big bank's nefarious practices, being forced to hike up prices to make up for swipe fees and credit rewards cards. Additional revenue from Small Business Saturday might enable such merchants to keep prices low and stock even more of those hard-to-find goodies you love.
Help your community. As U.S. News reported, local businesses reinvest in the local economy 60 percent more than larger chains and retailers. And then there's the power of three: "By supporting a local clothing boutique, a consumer is also supporting a local attorney, tax preparer, and printer," wrote Rachel Koning Beals.
One-of-a-kind gifts. We guarantee Best Buy won't be carrying that handmade iPad cover you've been after or the delicate silk chemise shipped direct from Austin. If it's originality you crave, go local.
Incredible deals. To help entice customers to small businesses, American Express is offering a $25 limited statement of credit to cardholders who pre-register their Amex card on the Small Business Saturday Facebook page. Similarly, FedEx handed out 40,000 $25 Shop Small-branded gift cards to woo shoppers.
Like credit unions, small businesses pride themselves on customer loyalty and are prepared to roll out the proverbial red carpet this holiday season to make sure you know it.
For a full list of participating cities, visit Shopsmall.com.
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