Yes, We’re Thinking About the Holidays Already

NEW YORK—Yes, I know, it’s not even November yet. But I’m a Virgo: I like to be prepared, and I love to have a game plan—and so do small businesses. As we begin to approach what is sure to be a very different holiday season than the ones we’re used to, many small businesses across the country have joined the campaign to Shop Early, Shop Local, which encourages consumers to get their holiday shopping done ahead of time and to support local businesses in the process.

This program doesn’t just help shoppers stress less—it’ll also help small businesses stay on their feet and keep their employees safe in the face of rising COVID-19 numbers. It’s not news that small businesses have suffered due to decreased foot traffic because of the pandemic—but even with the holiday rush, social distancing and staggered scheduling means it might take businesses longer to fulfil orders and get things out the door. With the postal service under pressure as well, holiday shopping in the third week of December might not be the best idea in 2020.

So, encouraging patrons to Shop Early, Shop Local is a great way to try to beat that holiday rush. This week, we’re taking a look at how different small businesses across the country are promoting this idea—giving you plenty of inspiration to get your practice on board, too.

The team at Midtown Reader in Tallahassee, Florida, is staying seasonal with a Halloween themed reminder that backups and shortages can be a total nightmare when it comes to holiday season. Image via midtownreader on Instagram.

The town of Bethel’s Connecticut’s Office of Economic Development issued a reminder to shop early and local, and listed some other ways to support small businesses, too. Image via bethelcted on Instagram.

Rock Scissor Paper, a shop in Los Angeles, shared sweet shop small designs, which other small businesses can use as well. All the designs are available online.  Image via rockscissorpaper on Instagram.

Harvard Book Store, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is hosting a shop early sale—and using a dog to promote the sale isn’t a bad idea either. Image via harvardbookstore on Instagram.

Many shops, including Adventure Bound Books in Morganton, North Carolina, are using the phrase “October is the new December,” to get the point across, as well as setting up their holiday product and displays now. Image via adventureboundbooks on Instagram.