Small businesses work for big returns this holiday

SOUTHERN ILLINOIS (KFVS) - A lot of businesses count on black Friday when it comes to the bottom line, but for the smaller ones it's a fight to get customers in the store.

"These are some of the items I purchased," Brighten Your Day Gift Shop Owner Kelly Thornburg explained.

Thornburg says this is the most important time of the year for her cash register, so she stocked up with new products.

"It's important to really make use of the holiday, we have as much merchandise as we can and sell as much as we can, because it has to hold us a large portion of the year," Thornburg said.

Thornburg says she can't compete with the large stores specials, but customer service is something she focuses on.

"We know what we get, go to training on a regular basis, and so we can help the customer out," Thornburg said.

At Coleman-Rhoads Furniture Store, Furniture Consultant Paula Coleman shows rows of fabric choices. Something Coleman says is important along with personal service when it comes to getting customers to spend local.

"Small businesses create most of the jobs in America and we certainly need to create jobs with the high unemployment," Coleman said.

According to the Small Business Administration local shops created 65 percent of jobs in the last 20 years.  That's why groups across the country declared Saturday, "Small Business Saturday."

It's a promotion Coalbelt Antiques Owner Kevin Bailey put on the front of his store to hopefully bring a few more customers in the door.

"We depend on interstate traffic and I'm hoping that people see small business and take the time to stop," Bailey said.

All the businesses owners say without shoppers they can't keep their doors open. Small Business Saturday is to help keep place like these open and contributing to the local economy.

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