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This holiday season is shaping up to be a better for most big retail chains and this is not “breaking news” by any means. However, what is important is that we all go out and do a little shopping! There are many reasons why people shop but this year it is really about supporting the economy and making your dollars work for everyone else. Allow me to explain a little further…
My dad owned a few hardware/fireplace stores when I was a little kid. I grew up around the “mom and pop” retail environment and always loved it. The customers that always came in got to know us and many became friends with my parents. They loved to shop at my dad’s store because he made everything personal – he really helped them and spent time with them and people love that stuff! He always knew how to take care of people and he personified customer service as we know it today. Needless to say my dad was very successful and still runs a store to this very day. You can’t argue with the kind of success – being in business for nearly 40 years! Often, people shopped at his stores even though his prices were higher than those at the big box chains. People WILL pay a premium for great and caring service and true knowledge of the products they sell. I know I do…and the trust that is built between retailer and customer can become quite powerful. In the end, my dad helped people and both he and his customers knew that. They in turn supported him and his business and that my friend is what a great retail experience is all about. There are still plenty of retail chains that provide a good experience but they seem to be fading. The ones that will survive in the coming years will be those that can deliver such an experience no matter how large they become.
The point I am trying to make is that you need to support those stores and people that have always treated you well. Go spend a few bucks there. Make sure you buy something even if it is not necessarily in your budget. When you buy a gift for someone you like you not only help the retail but you help those that work there and create a special moment for the recipient of the gift. The all around support you give will have a positive ripple effect on the economy and that is exactly what we need right now. So get up and go shopping and have some fun!!