Small Business Saturday is a nationally recognized event aimed to support the 28 million small businesses all across the country. Placed strategically between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the Shop Small Movement aims to increase customer traffic to small businesses throughout the busiest shopping weekend of the year.
On November 30th, Small Business Saturday will sweep the nation. It may occur at The Angry Baker down the street, at Seven Studios around the corner, or at the Olde Towne Tavern in Olde Towne East. At ECDI, small business growth is celebrated throughout the year. Many of our clients not only believe in Small Business Saturday’s message, but they live, breath, and whole-heartedly embrace it. Here are two such stories, how we’ve helped them, and how they are actively involved in the Shop Small Movement:
Sharon Gordon, founder of Urban Trendsetters, Ohio’s leading urban news magazine, has been in business for over ten years. Working through the hardships of running a business while balancing her family life, she has experienced her fair share of doubt.
“I almost had to close up shop,” Gordon says. “I had just lost my office space and was running out of options…With all the craziness, there was no way I could manage my business outside of my home.”
Gordon was introduced to The Women’s Business Center of Ohio powered by ECDI and its Program Director, Ellen Harvey. The WBC at ECDI is the only Small Business Administration-funded WBC in the state.
“The WBC has helped me tremendously,” Gordon continues. “The energy, the camaraderie, the wealth of knowledge that is in here, in terms of where to network, but also the resources, being able to come and use the shared office space and be amongst other passionate women entrepreneurs…it breeds a feeling of togetherness.”
Now, with help from the WBC, Gordon has turned a page. She has managed to bring her business back from the brink of closure and is expecting a profitable future. She attributes her success to both the WBC’s guidance, as well as the “helpful spirit” shared among fellow women entrepreneurs.
“A day like Small Biz Saturday, people don’t realize that one day can help us our whole first quarter, depending on where we are in our business so it is so important to remember small businesses,” Gordon reiterates. “We are all in this together.”
Gordon is correct in her statement that “we are all in this together.” Over 50 percent of the working population works in the small business sector and a whopping $5.5 billion was spent at local stores on Small Business Saturday just last year.
Green Scoop Pet Waste Recycling, founded by Jendell Duffner, is the first business established in the United States that turns pet waste into a reusable energy source (natural gas & electricity), as well as organic soil. Without the help of ECDI, this innovative business idea would never have come to fruition.
“ECDI has been a one-stop shop for my small business education,” Duffner says. “Their help in assisting startups is the reason we are in operation today. We are lucky to have them as a resource here in Columbus.”
Green Scoop Pet Waste Recycling exemplifies the type of small businesses consumers look to support on days such as Small Business Saturday and throughout the rest of the year. Ninety-three percent of consumers believe “it’s important to support local, small business that provide value to their community.”
By continually providing small businesses with valuable business support and resources, not just in Ohio, but also throughout the entire country, we can create a lasting impact that isn’t just measured in dollars, but also measured in lives changed. We at ECDI stand by our mission statement: “Investing in people to create measurable and enduring social and economic change”
Both Urban Trendsetters and Green Scoop Pet Waste Recycling will be running specials on Small Business Saturday. We urge you to visit them online and see what they have to offer.
*All Small Business Saturday Statistics are from the Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy, United States Census Bureau: Statistics of U.S. Business, American Express Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey.