PATERSON, NJ – With the holidays approaching many businesses big and small are getting bombarded with shoppers. However, with local retailer and service providers playing such a key role in the economy, consumers are being encouraged once again to “shop local”, especially this Small Business Saturday, which will take place on November 27.
This is a campaign started by American Express with the goal of driving $100 billion in reported consumer spending to small businesses from 2021 through 2025.
The campaign also features a series of initiatives to drive consumers to “Shop Small” during the holiday season, including providing downloadable resources to merchants to help promote their businesses and rally communities, a Google Shopping collaboration to create shoppable digital murals displaying locally-sourced products across the U.S., a Shop Small x ByBlack online marketplace powered by Showfields, and the launch of a new grant program in partnership with Main Street America to support the underrepresented small businesses.
“When you buy from a local store, you’re helping a business owner send their child to camp or to play baseball,” Kathleen Muldoon, Director of the William Paterson University Small Business Development Center (SBDC) said. “You’re not having a CEO buy his third house.”
The goal of the SBDC is to help business owners run their business with any questions or concerns they might have.The Center is run all year round and welcomes any business.
“When a business owner comes and expresses the issues that they are having, what I do with the grants that we get is hire consultants to work with them on those issues” Muldoon said. “It’s not just classes, it’s individual counseling, training, and mentoring as well.”
Some of the small businesses that have come to the Center have grown throughout the years, many seeing their sales increase and need for space grow.
“We will work with these businesses until they feel they don’t need our help anymore.” Muldoon said of those classified as small businesses, or under 500 employees. “We work with owners to help them understand and to get a grasp on how important it is to their business.”
One class that the Center is offering is called “Side Hustle”. This is for people who have a full-time job, but also have an idea for a business they’d like to start in addition to their regular job. .
“If you have a passion for what you want, come to us,” Muldoon said. “Let us walk you through it. Don’t give up on any dream you have. Come to us and let us work with you to try to start it.”
The Small Business Development Center is located at 131 Ellison Street in Paterson and at William Paterson University.
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