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Rallying Richmond: Snagajob hits the streets for small business

Snagajob has partnered with American Express for this year’s Small Business Saturday®. As we count down the days to November 30, we’re getting businesses in the area pumped about the exciting day.

Nov. 7, Snagajob hit the streets to rally the small businesses in our hometown of Richmond, Va. Armed with balloons and fliers, we split up and went door-to-door to meet local shop owners and talk about their hiring needs.

First stop was historic Carytown. Located just south of Richmond’s Museum District, the street was the city’s first strip-style shopping center and has remained a commercial attraction since 1938. The area is always evolving with new shops and eateries but has remained a stronghold for small businesses and a proving ground for Richmond entrepreneurs. The Snagajob team met with most of the 250 establishments before we worked up an appetite. Luckily, Carytown is home to some of Richmond’s best restaurants so we grabbed a few slices from Mary Angelou’s Pizza and refueled for the next destination.

With our bellies full, we headed west to the shopping center at the corner of Libbie and Grove Avenue. Affectionately known as “The Avenues,” the area is home to many eclectic shops that offer everything from confections to upscale dining in addition to some of Richmond’s finest clothing. It’s Richmond’s premiere suburban shopping experience and we were greeted eagerly by the friendly shop owners who were excited to hear about how we’re helping the community.

There are plans to connect The Avenues with our final stop, Westhampton. It wouldn’t take much. Our walk took only minutes and was the perfect opportunity for the Snagajob team to discuss the concerns we had learned from Richmond’s small business owners. By and large, the issue was attracting new visitors to the small businesses. The shops offer so much but their budgets leave little for advertising and so they depend heavily on word-of-mouth.

In no time we had arrived at Westhampton with a renewed determination to help spread the word for small businesses. The quiet enclave hosts many community events, including a summer concert series. The shops have thrived here, under the backdrop of the enormous Westhampton School, since 1917. The school is now deserted, but the shops are still bustling thanks to commuter traffic and busy metro stops. We made quick work of the area and with our fliers depleted, we headed home.

We set out for the day thinking we had something to offer small businesses in Richmond and returned with the realization that they have so much more to offer us. We couldn’t help purchasing a few items along the way or feeling humbled by the hospitality of every local shop owner. This Small Business Saturday, get out and see what your local scene is like. If every city has just a few shops like the ones we found in Richmond, it won’t be hard to make every day a small business day.

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Edward is a content specialist at Snagajob. He enjoys writing blog posts and short stories but when his pen is out of ink, you can find him rebuilding vintage mopeds and caring for his pet tortoise.

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