Shop Owner: 'Yesterday was our biggest day on record' - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Shop Owner: 'Yesterday was our biggest day on record'

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CHATTANOOGA (WRCB)-- Christmas season can mean the difference between make or break if your business is selling.

Small Business Saturday is all about getting shoppers to support the ‘mom and pop' stores of America.

On Frazier Avenue, shops are full of holiday bustle. Small business owners depend on Black Friday a little more than stores like Wal-Mart, Target and Best Buy.

The problem is, they tend to be overshadowed by the elaborate ad campaigns and outrageous deals those stores offer. But this year downtown shop owners say they weren't prepared for the amount of people who showed up to buy local.

"Last year we were busy, but we were really unprepared for this year," says Alison Songer, owner of N2Shoes.

It's been a good day at the North Shore's N2Shoes. In fact, store Songer says by the end of this weekend, her sales will be 20 percent higher than this time last year.

"For us, yesterday was our biggest day on record," Songer says. "We've been around for about two and a half years and today has been good, too; but not like yesterday."

On Small Business Saturday, the shoe shop staff stays busy again as eager buyers hit the North Shore for those gifts you can't find anywhere else.

"I purchased some shotgun shell, Christmas lights," says shopper, Kerry Boyce.

Kerry Boyce always visits Frazier Avenue after Thanksgiving, and although he knows Saturday is the day to buy local, he says that's not what brought him out this year.

"We always end up on Frazier Avenue after Thanksgiving just because they have such a unique selection of shops and gifts," says Boyce.

Unlike N2Shoes, Blues Skies has been around for 11 years. Owner Tina Harrison says after two years of recession lows, it's good to see business pick up again.

"The idea of supporting small business and local business, it kind of keeps that at the front of people's minds, reminds them of small business," she says. "So, yea, it's great!"

American Express began the movement to push consumers toward local retailers the day after Thanksgiving last year.

For most Frazier Avenue shop owners, making ends meet has been a struggle during the recession.

This weekend is more than just good business. As Songer says, it's a sign that positive change is here.

"It was really humbling to see people come out to support our little store," says Songer.

Again, this is the second year for Small Business Saturday.

Another reason to shop local: nearly 70 percent of money spent at a small business, stays in the local economy in the form of taxes, payroll and services.

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