If you have not already, you’ll soon start thinking about Christmas shopping and the thousands of options that accompany the task. Not only is this a huge financial commitment for you, these next few weeks are some of the most important of the entire year for most businesses.

After we’ve finished the turkey and quality time with family, businesses across the country will immediately launch into four weeks of holiday-themed marketing campaigns. Before we get swept up in the excitement of the holiday season, let’s pause and look at some facts. What do these next few weeks mean for local small businesses, and how can we help our community by supporting them?

  • Sixty-nine percent (69%) of Americans plan to shop at some point during the weekend after Thanksgiving.
  • Most consumers plan to spend an average of $967.13 over the course of the 2017 holiday season.
  • Following a struggling economy brought about the recession, Small Business Saturday was launched in 2010 in hopes of encouraging people to shop local during the holiday season and support their communities.
  • In 2016, Small Business Saturday generated approximately $15.4 billion with an estimated 112 million shoppers participating.
  • In Mississippi, there are 252,019 small businesses in operation. This makes up 99.3% of all businesses in the state.
  • In Mississippi, approximately 47% of all employees in the state work for a small business.

The Source aims to support every professional woman in every industry. These upcoming weeks are the perfect time for all of us to support local small business – specifically those owned by women. Many of these businesses are staples in our community run by some of the most impressive women you’ve ever met.

Let’s take the next few weeks to be intentional about where we spend our money. If every individual is spending somewhere in the neighborhood of $1000 shopping during the holiday season, collectively we can make a significant difference in these businesses by aiming to spend our money with small businesses owned by women.

Communities in Mississippi are more like family. It’s not difficult to pinpoint which small businesses are owned by women. A business’s website or social media sites should be a good starting point. The Source Advisory Panel is also full of small business owners we can support. As women aiming to make a difference in the lives of other women and elevate our influence in the professional world, let’s take these upcoming weeks to intentionally support other women and their small businesses.

For more statistics about small businesses and holiday spending, click herehere, or here.