Show some love for the little guys

Show+some+love+for+the+little+guys

Matthew Fular, Editor-in-Chief

As we get closer to crunch time that inevitably occurs during holiday shopping, it is tempting to load up your Amazon cart and call it a day. While convenience is well and good, where people purchase their gifts and goodies this year has a greater impact than any time within the last decade, and that is all thanks to the microscopic virus currently plaguing the world. The underdogs of the pandemic, small businesses and restaurants, are counting on their fellow Americans to help them through the times.

The holiday season has a tendency to boost sales for all retailers, with Americans spending close to $730 billion last year according to the National Retail Federation and are expected to be up again in spite of the pandemic. While it sounds great in theory, it does not mean the majority of those profits are going into the pockets of the little guys.

It is impossible to not mention Amazon when it comes to holiday shopping. The convenience of two-day shipping and seemingly unbeatable prices are hard to resist. While you may be purchasing from a small business on Amazon, remember that 15 percent or more of the profit goes to the logistics giant who is by no means hurting since the start of the pandemic, raking in around $88.9 billion in the second quarter this year, compared with $63.4 billion in second quarter 2019.

If online is your style of shopping in general I think it is also important to remember that some local businesses have websites or shops set up through Facebook that are a good alternative to going in person, you know pandemic and all. You also have independent creators that make unique items and sell on websites like Etsy.com. A simple search of “small businesses near me” often pulls up more than just retail options for those looking to support local eateries by ordering carry out. There is no one way to support locally owned businesses, but there is a best time and that is now.

This holiday season could keep many local businesses afloat or drive a final nail into the coffin, and we consumers decide that fate. So, consider supporting a local business this holiday season, you may be doing more than just getting a gift, you could help save a business.

Graphic by Matthew Karbownik