Albany Business Improvement District head stresses importance of shopping local

Important to support local businesses on Saturday

It is important to support local businesses during Small Business Saturday.

Small Business Saturday takes place the day after Black Friday every year.

Ella Montelone, executive director of the Lark Street Business Improvement District, said it is important to support local businesses.

“So many of our small businesses are owned by people who live right around Lake Street. We have veterans. We have single parents. We have people who have lived in our community for years,” Montelone said.

The district starts at Washington Avenue and goes up to Delaware Avenue. It includes restaurants, retailers and shops.  

Small Business Saturday was founded in 2010 to help small businesses gain exposure and to encourage consumers to shop within their own communities during the holiday season. It became official in 2011.

Sometimes, it is hard for small businesses to compete with big brands and large retailers.

“We have active social media pages, so we can help promote the deals that our small businesses put forth especially this point in the year. Many of our businesses are offering gift card deals, or buy one get one or all sorts of holiday things they’re offering in the season to promote their businesses and shopping locally,” she said.

A total of 72% of shoppers said Small Business Saturday makes them want to shop and dine at small independently owned retailers and restaurants all year long, according to the American Express 2022 Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey.