Sunday, Mar 9, 2014
Small Businesses Embrace Near Record Sales
WSIL-- As the holiday shopping season came to a close, customers were out in full force Tuesday. They may be known for rushing to major retailers, but many shopped at smaller stores.
This December has been a very Merry Christmas shopping season for small businesses in Southern Illinois.
"There for a while I thought where are they? And then the last two weeks they've just come out of the wood work and it's been kind of crazy ever since," M Boutique owner Meredith Ashe shared.
"This is a better year for us in the holiday seasons. this has probably been our best," explained Quatro's Owner Steve Payne.
He says they're seeing bigger crowds. A benefit from the holiday falling mid-week.
"There's just a whole diversity of people who are coming down to eat because they are shopping, they're out entertaining," Payne added.
He's faced the challenge of expanding their clientele beyond SIU students. An achievement was easy to see in the packed restaurant Christmas Eve.
"That's sort of the fun part of working the holidays. Even though they're a little hectic," he said.
M Boutique in Marion is known for selling one of a kind merchandise.
"You find different products when you shop small than when you shop everywhere else," Ashe enthused.
She's been in business since 2007 and says sales this season are looking up.
"For the first time in a couple years they're finally seeming to be a little better," said Ashe.
Both owners agree there's a push to stay open longer.
"Today, I've already taken 20-30 phone calls of will we be open tomorrow? We're seeing that trend happening a little more where people are having more free time," Payne explained.
But they pride themselves on closing for major holidays like Christmas Day, placing the focus back on people instead of solely on profits.
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