By Scott Gaertner
Lifestyle Contributor

It’s the annual holiday shopping tradition that gets communities everywhere out in support of their favorite small businesses. This year, Small Business Saturday falls on November 24 and it is a great day to get to know and support your local Scottsdale North businesses.

Small Business Saturday is the one day every year set aside to support small businesses across the entire United States. The event was started by American Express in 2010 and is celebrated on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Nestled in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, this event encourages consumers to get out and shop at their local neighborhood stores.

In 2016, an estimated 112 million shoppers participated in the seventh annual Small Business Saturday by shopping at local shops, setting a new record for the event. The goal of Small Business Saturday is to remind consumers that they play a key role in helping the small businesses in their community thrive and to encourage them to get out and shop & dine at local businesses.

Shopping Small Is A Big Deal
It’s easy to think small businesses get overshadowed by major corporations and Black Friday madness. Mom-and-pop shops don’t have the resources to pull off million-dollar promotions. But they do have the upper hand when it comes to impacting the economy.

In fact, small businesses drive much of the United States economy. Currently, there are 28 million American small businesses, which account for 54 percent of all U.S. sales.
And, it’s not just the number of small businesses that give them an economic advantage. Small businesses provide many benefits to consumers that large corporations simply cannot.

Unique offerings
Small businesses offer one-of-a-kind products and services. These unique items add character to local communities and inspire interest in customers. Neighborhood businesses that sell original goods keep money filtering through local economies.
Exceptional service
More than just a product or service, small businesses offer customers an experience. Local companies can provide one-on-one service that is often impossible for large corporations. Excellent service encourages customers to build personal connections with the businesses they buy from.

Keep money local
Circulating money in the same locality helps that community thrive. As I mentioned in my article last month, studies have shown that for every $100 spent in locally owned businesses, $73 stays local. The study found that for every $100 spent non-locally only $43 stayed local. That adds up! One study in Maine showed that locally owned businesses contribute significantly more to local charities and fundraisers than do their national counterparts.

Access to Experts
Small business owners are experts in their industries. They sacrificed time, money, and more to build businesses out of their passions. By shopping small, customers have better chances of getting tailored and knowledgeable answers to their questions.

You’re going to feel good
Would you rather feel the pang of guilt buying so-so coffee or a lifeless burger at McDonalds, or be entirely satisfied with your latte made with love from Boss Coffee, and a bangin’ burger from Blu Burger Grille? Isn’t it a lot more fun doing business with people you know?

Supporting small businesses deserves to be part of all of our everyday routines, but let’s kick start the right habits on this Scottsdale North Small Business Saturday. It’s a great way to become better acquainted with your neighborhood and support the community. We definitely think it’s a lot more fun doing business with people we know! For listings of Scottsdale North small business participants go to