Local stores busy fulfilling online orders after holiday shopping weekend

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Shoppers came out in droves to support local stores on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. With transactions complete, small business owners tell us now comes the time to get orders packed up and shipped out in time for the holidays.

“We come in and all we do is pack orders from the night before,” said Rockford Art Deli Owner Jarrod Hennis.

Rockford Art Deli has been averaging 50 to 100 online orders a day.

“Shipping has been a whole person’s job all day, every day,” Hennis said. “Last year we didn’t do a lot of sales at all online, just because we relied on foot traffic, the crowds, and the events we would have.”

“We have been urging people to shop online if they don’t feel safe. We have everything curbside pickup, and shipping available for everything,” he added.

Embracing the Internet has now become one way for small businesses to try and solidify their future amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Cyber Monday was a good day for us. We didn’t do anything super crazy, we did a small percentage off. I’ve been really urging small businesses to not discount their products.
We need to sell and sell what we’re worth, and not discount everything because we can’t compete with box stores,” Hennis explained.

Just across the street, Bath and Body Fusion Owner says her employees have been packing up more online orders than normal.

“It just makes my heart happy, we pour so much light and love into our community,” Jenny Ralston said. “We still have the whole month of December…and many of us need the business so badly to stay in business.”

Both owners say they hope the trend of shopping small and online continues.

“It’s been a really, really rough year and this Christmas is so crucial to our future of staying in business,” Ralston added.

“We figured out our community does believe in the local businesses, they want to support us. They’re eager to keep things so when we’re back to normal we can go out and shop and dine and enjoy each other, maybe hug again,” Hennis said.

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