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Shopping Small Gets Big

A movement to shop local for the holidays becomes Small Business Saturday on Nov. 26. Wines of Wildwood is a prime example of how to keep the dollars local.

A new day has been added to the holiday calendar, but keep reading! It’s a good one.

A year ago, as the U.S. economy was beginning its upturn, small business owners were looking for a way to attract customers, and according to American Express, a supporter of the new holiday, 93 percent of consumers like to support local businesses. Thus was born Small Business Saturday.

“Small businesses are really the lifeblood of the economy,” said Mary Ann Fitzmaurice Reilly, senior vice president, customer marketing for American Express.

Black Friday, the holiday shopping kickoff was first. Then the Monday following Thanksgiving became Cyber Monday. Now Small Business Saturday encourages  shoppers to hit the sidewalks and support locally owned stores the Saturday after Black Friday. Last year was the first. This year, it’s Nov. 26.

Fitzmaurice Reilly said last year was about creating awareness of the day. This year shops are being encouraged to use Facebook and other social networking tools to promote their business. American Express’s Small Business Saturday Facebook page encourages consumers to shop small, and provides tools for businesses to make their own Facebook page, if they don’t already have one.

“What we were able to do on the consumer side last year, and continue to do this year, is to tap into the traffic, the viral nature of the Facebooks of the world,” Fitzmaurice Reilly said. According to a survey conducted by American Express, 89 million people said they plan to shop small on Small Business Saturday.

Looking for some wine for gifts or holiday gatherings? Look in Wildwood

"We know it's tempting to just grab a bottle of some mass-produced something while ricocheting through big box and grocery stores, but following is why you should buy your wines from us," said Karl Hagnauer, co-owner of .

  1. Better prices: Grocery stores will have one or two "loss leaders" to tempt you, but generally their prices are higher than ours...even those "special" yellow tag prices are often higher than our regular prices.
  2. Better selections:  Big box stores offer mass-produced wines for the masses. We have more than 1,000 different wines (about 5,000 bottles) all carefully chosen with our customers' tastes and wallets in mind.
  3. Higher quality:  We steer away from factory wines and bring you much higher quality, smaller production wines from highly acclaimed, mostly family-owned vineyards worldwide.
  4. Better wines for any wallet:  If you have only $10 to spend on a wine, we can find you something much better that doesn't even have a kangaroo or bare feet on it.
  5. Better service:  First, there is some! We greet and help each and every customer, and because we love our jobs, it's a fun, happy place to shop. Bring in a menu, your likes and price range, and we'll help you find the perfect wine match. 

"Of course, we also hope that you will consider how important it is where you spend your money. We are a local, family run hometown business that helps make Wildwood Wildwood," said Hagnauer. "We hope to see you many times during this holiday season and beyond."     

Two other resources for finding great, local companies is and the .

To get Saturday's emphasis going, American Express is giving the first 10,000 small businesses to make their own Facebook page through the Small Business Saturday Facebook page $100 in Facebook advertising.

For businesses already on Facebook, there’s a program created with the help of Google called My Business Story, which helps a business tell its story on Facebook with a YouTube video.

Patti Guttmann, with the St. Louis office of the U.S. Small Business Administration said the S.B.A. sponsors an entire week, nationally, that promotes small businesses. In St. Louis, the week, Small Business Week of Eastern Missouri, is in May.

Guttmann said of the second annual Small Business Saturday, “hopefully millions of people will be shopping at small businesses on that Saturday. To help them grow is a fantastic thing.”

Lou Malnassy November 25, 2011 at 05:49 PM
There's almost nothing you can't find at a local business. When you're looking for gifts, you'll find a better choice of unique items to better reflect your and the gift receiver's tastes.
Brandon Fry - Local Volunteer November 26, 2011 at 03:04 PM
I Love to Shop Local, I find the greatest Antique and Gift Malls in our area.
Julie Brown Patton (Editor) November 26, 2011 at 03:27 PM
From Heels Boutique Facebook page for Shop Small Business Saturday: Stop by Heels, grab an ornament from the discount ornament tree and save 15 to 50 percent on entire full price purchase!!
Susan Stewart November 26, 2011 at 04:59 PM
Consider a clutter free gift this year! Perfectly Placed is offering a B1G1 deal on recorded organizing classes (11 to choose from). Click on the link to order your first class and then send me an email (Susan@perfectlyplaced.org) letting me know which class you would like to have for free. http://www.perfectlyplaced.org/?page_id=319

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