Small Business Saturday, held this year on November 28, usually marks the start of the holiday shopping season. People are encouraged to shop small and visit local commercial corridors. Small Business Saturday celebrates local small businesses, the people who run them, and the important impact they have in their communities. But your support for small businesses doesn’t have to begin and end on Small Business Saturday—local shops and entrepreneurs need your business now more than ever. 

Neighborhood businesses are the heart of communities across Philadelphia, providing jobs and goods and services for residents. While holiday shopping will look different from previous years due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the health precautions in place, there are still many ways to support local businesses throughout the season.

Here’s what you can do right now to support local businesses, safely:

Shop online

If you’re running low on your favorite product, try to reorder it online from a local shop instead of a big box store. Plenty of small businesses are offering products online. See if your favorite shop carries the product you need on its website. You’ll be practicing social distancing while supporting small businesses in your community.

Shop in-person at neighborhood commercial corridors

Philadelphia has dozens of commercial corridors, which are anchors for communities across the city. From Germantown to South Philly to the Northeast, visit diverse shopping districts all over the city for discounts, events, and more. Be sure to wear a mask, wash or sanitize your hands often, and follow other COVID-19 safety precautions.

Buy gift cards

Many of your favorite local shops and restaurants sell gift cards onsite and online. You can buy a gift card to use later, especially as more businesses reopen. The store will get the support it needs now, and you get to look forward to a shopping experience in the future. Purchase a gift card for a friend, family members, or yourself to spread your support to multiple businesses.  

Consider donating gift cards to organizations that need resources. For example, buy an art store gift card for an art teacher at your local school.

Dine outdoors

Philadelphia’s diverse restaurants not only help to power the local economy, but they also give the city’s neighborhoods their distinct character. Have a special meal with your family to celebrate the winter holidays. Make sure you’re following safety precautions when dining outdoors, and always try to make a reservation.

Order food to go 

Most restaurants across the city are offering delivery, curbside pick-up, and takeout options. Forget about cooking tonight and check in with your favorite neighborhood spot to fuel a night of gift wrapping instead. You can also purchase a gift certificate to use when you’re hungry again later. Try to tip restaurant staff and delivery people generously, and consider ordering directly from the restaurant.

Share your favorite businesses with your friends

These are financially stressful times for many of us. If you’re not able to purchase anything from your favorite shops right now, consider sharing their posts on social media or encourage your friends and family to support them if they can.

2020 has been difficult for Philadelphia’s small businesses, and the holiday season is the perfect time to support them however you can.

Event spotlight showcasing the tree lightings and holiday happenings around Philadelphia.