Businesses Weigh in on Small Business Saturday

By: Sanika Dange Email
By: Sanika Dange Email

BAY COUNTY Locally owned businesses have mixed feelings about this weekend's "Small Business Saturday" turnout.

The Bay County Chamber promoted the effort this year, creating a printable incentive passbook for customers, but the initiative leaves some room for improvement next year.

Tom's Hot Dogs couldn't be happier with this year's "Small Business Saturday" turnout.

Tom's Hot Dogs owner Pam Armstrong says, "I think that they did a very good job of promoting, of getting the information out, doing this different event that helps push people to our businesses."

The Bay County Chamber of Commerce created "printable passbooks" for participating small businesses.

Customers could collect stamps from each venue, then turn them in for a raffle.

But not every store saw an increase in business Saturday.

Armstrong says, "I think we had about 15 or 20 come through."

Maria Galvan from Maddie's La Casita says, "Passbooks? Actually no, I didn't get very many, but I did have a lot of business. It was a lot better than a usual Saturday."

Blue Heron Fine Gifts owner Leslie Brown says, "We actually did not see any passbooks. I was a little disappointed."

Panama City Beach Vice Mayor John Reichard says, "Some said it wasn't as strong as they hoped it would be but hopefully it'll grow as the word gets out."

The owners of Blue Heron Fine Gifts say being on the beach may have affected their sales.

They've decided to do their own promotion next year.

Brown says, "I think the idea is terrific. I'm just not sure everybody knew what exactly they were supposed to do, and it's like anything else. The first time you try something, there are always kinks to work out."

The passbook raffle for a $50 gift card to Los Rancheros Mexican Restaurant will be held this Wednesday.

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