by Anonymous Newport Merchant
I’m cautiously optimistic about this season for businesses on Newport Avenue.
First off there is a much more positive feel from my customers as well as from other merchants that this is going to be a better Christmas than last. Last year there was a palpable atmosphere of fear and uncertainty where as this year the mood is considerably more optimistic.
September, October, and November are my slowest months and this year was no exception. My corporate year ended on October 31st and I’m down 20% for the year. Now, normally these numbers would put me into the pits of despair but, after hearing and reading what other similar merchants are experiencing I’m feeling pretty good!
I’m hearing stories of 35 to 50% off from other businesses.
I think that a lot of the reason I’m down so much less than the industry average is the loyalty of the neighborhood. I hear this from other merchants as well. I hear over and over from customers that they are thinking twice about where they are going to spend their hard earned money and they are making a focused effort to support their local merchants.
This goes for restaurants, jewelry and clothing stores and the antique dealers. Kind of makes me proud of the kind of person who lives around here. It comes from all economic brackets. I think this economy has brought this neighborhood closer. We’ll come out of it tighter than ever.
I’ll give you another report after Christmas. Until then…