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Shoppers support local business during Small Business Saturday

WTAE Pittsburgh logo WTAE Pittsburgh 11/29/2020
a person standing in front of a store: small business saturday © WTAE small business saturday

COVID-19 has meant troubled times for hundreds of thousands of small businesses in 2020. Saturday, they're hoping to hang on with Small Business Saturday, a day meant to encourage people to support local businesses.

For Amanda Blair, the owner of Cards Unlimited in Shadyside, this Small Business Saturday is a little different.

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"We're still having customers which is really lovely, but certainly the numbers aren't as high and that's okay," she said. "We appreciate anybody coming in."

Blair said she's trying to remain positive and keep the energy up at her business, but it's been a tough year.

"The people that have come out and show support has just given me a lot of hope," she said.

"The traffic flow today has been slower and yesterday was slower than past years," said Maureen Staley, co-owner of The Picket Fence in Shadyside.

Staley said the pandemic forced her to change her approach to Small Business Saturday.

"Usually we have a big sale in the store this weekend but we're not able to do that this year," she said.

Shoppers Pittsburgh's Action News Four talked to said buying local is important to keep these businesses alive.

"I work for a small business so it is important that we support small businesses when we can and just try to keep them here because that's what gives Pittsburgh and especially this street character and everything," said shopper Natasha Hlinka.

Business owners said they're grateful for the support during these difficult times.

"I'm so thankful to have the community support that we have had," said Staley. "That people are still coming into the store to shop and they're not scared, even with the latest spike in cases. They're still coming into the store. They're still supporting us so I am thankful for that."

Business owners said they've had to pivot during the pandemic to help bring in sales. Blair said she created a website for Cards Unlimited to encourage online sales. Local business owners are encouraging shoppers who don't want to visit the physical store to instead shop their websites.

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