In 2010, something magical happened to the nation’s small business community: American Express launched its first-ever Small Business Saturday. Five years later, what many initially thought was a ploy to re-engage small businesses has blossomed into a nationwide effort to “Shop Small”.
In Charlotte, Small Business Saturday was not a phenomenon, but rather a sigh of relief that, finally, the rest of the nation was catching up. It’s no secret that Charlotte loves business, but with thousands of locally owned businesses in Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, small businesses hold a special place in the Queen City’s heart.
Niche neighborhoods such as NoDa, Dilworth, Historic South End and Plaza Midwood are all thriving, in large part due to their abundance of small businesses. In fact, supporting the small business community is crucial for Charlotte’s overall success. As Mayor Daniel Clodfelter said in his Small Business Saturday proclamation, “…support of local small businesses is critical to maintaining a robust and socially, environmentally, and financially sustainable community.”
So why has Charlotte been so successful in developing a booming small business community?
Part of the success might have to do with the fact that the City of Charlotte itself not only appreciates the value of its small business community, but it also invests in its success. One way that the city invests in the small business community is through CharlotteBusinessResources.com (That’s us!).
Launched in 2013, we are a consortium of organizations dedicated to providing business owners with partnerships and tools for their success. Whether a business is a mere idea or ready to be franchised, we aim to provide an interactive library of national and regional organizations that can help any entrepreneur reach their business goals.
Economic Development & Small Business liaisons Christi Floyd and Jerrianne Jackson are part of the Neighborhood & Business Services Department responsible for managing the site.
“There is a lot of information out there for businesses, and our goal is to make it as easy as possible for people to get the help they need,” says Jackson.
“It’s amazing to hear the success stories from people who use the site,” adds Floyd. “It’s important that the small business community sees – and feels – the respect our local government has for them”.
Celebrate Small Business Saturday on November 28th! Are you ready to Shop Small this Saturday? Learn more here.