CLEVELAND -- 'Tis the season to shop!
Finding the perfect holiday gift for everyone on your list can be a "big" task and some people are deciding to shop "small."
Small Business Saturday, the day between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, is set aside for shoppers to spend their holiday dollars at local boutiques and independent stores.
"I would rather come to a small businesses rather than support larger corporations. I like the mom and pop stores and what they stand for," Karen Koenig said as she shopped at Campbell's Sweets Factory in Cleveland's Ohio City neighborhood Saturday.
American Express started Small Business Saturday four years ago as a way to help small retailers during tough economic times. Jennie Doran, owner of Room Service, said she has seen the concept of buying locally catching on.
"I've seen it gain a lot of traction over the past couple years. People have become increasingly vocal and supportive of us small entrepreneurs who are trying to make our way here in Cleveland," she said.
Lauren Budin said she actually prefers shopping at boutiques and small shops rather than big box stores.
"I can't get the kind of presents that I am looking for at big stores," she said.
Alyssa Cowling of Lorain said the same of her shopping experience at the Salty Not Sweet Shop on West 25th Street in Cleveland.
"I can come here and find something that I am not going to find anywhere else. So, I do like that," she said.
Shoppers spent an estimated $5.5 billion nationwide during Small Business Saturday last year and while it is just a one day event, small business owners hope their new found customers will keep coming back.