Local companies see surge in Black Friday business amid supply chain problems

Nov 26, 2021, 8:05 PM

SALT LAKE CITY — A new survey by Lending Tree shows nearly half of all consumers will shop at small, locally-owned businesses this weekend and spend an average of $305 per person.

That’s good news for small businesses that struggled at the onset of the shutdown.

However, many Utah business owners say business has been booming for months.

That could be, in part, because nearly two-thirds of Americans in that same survey said they are more loyal to small businesses now than they were before the pandemic started.

In the highly popular shopping center at 9th and 9th in Salt Lake City, Diane Etherington, owner of The Children’s Hour, says business is great after a tough shutdown.

“We feel like we have a whole new crew, as well as the old crew, that has come back, so it’s been great,” she said.

Etherington opened the shop 38 years ago, and has been on the corner of 900 East and 900 South for 17 years.

She said supply chain and shortages haven’t impacted her because she keeps a lot of stock on hand. So, now that people are back to shopping in stores, holiday shopping looks promising.

At Albion Fit’s warehouse, the mostly women-owned and operated business, is shipping thousands of packages a day.

The company sells high-end leisure and swim wear.

“Lucky for us, leisure wear is just what exploded in 2019 and 2020, so we were very, very fortunate,” said co-founder Liz Findlay.

The company has also avoided most of the highly publicized supply problems by having a vertical business plan. That means they create everything here in Utah at a factory they own and operate.

Additionally, Findlay made an out-of-character purchase months before the shutdown — fabric.

That chance decision became a huge advantage.

While other companies struggled, Albion was poised to thrive, and they have.

“We’ve tripled and then tripled again,” Findlay said of sales over the past two years. “It’s pretty exciting.”

Findlay and her husband and co-founder are big advocates of a “shop local” mindset, and believe Utah companies make it easy.

“You can get everything your heart could possibly desire in Utah,” said Findlay. “If you want furniture, there’s a store here. Décor, barbecues, fitness wear, outerwear, it’s all here.”

And Findlay knows how much that benefits Utah.

“When you shop locally, all of those tax dollars stay here in our community,” she said.

As Etherington watches shoppers this Black Friday, she remembers why she has always loved her store.

“I’m filled with gratitude for lovely people that make our lives here so happy, and talking to them all day long — what a dream job,” said Etherington. “It’s just the best.”

The Retail Trade Federation said 58.1 million people plan to shop Saturday.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Ladd Egan

Lehi neighborhood wants to find out what’s interfering with garage door openers

It’s a mystery that a Lehi neighborhood wants to solve: What’s causing their garage door openers to not function?
22 hours ago
The Davis School District opened on Mayday with 130 nutrition services position open. (KSL TV)...
Mike Anderson

Staffing shortages plague many Utah school districts on the first day of school

Ready or not, Monday was the first day of school for many kids in Utah.
22 hours ago
Dan Rascon

Utah player suffers tragic accident just days before Little League World Series

A Utah little league player in the World Series is critically injured, his family is praying for a miracle.
22 hours ago
Michael Houck

Police: Suspect calls police but refused to answer door, floods hotel room

A man flooded his hotel room after calling 9-1-1 and refusing to answer his door Saturday morning. 
22 hours ago
This photo is from a year ago: Crystal Bayat protesting alongside her mother and other women  In th...
Jed Boal

After death threats from the Taliban, an Afghan activist fled to Salt Lake City

This evening, Afghan refugees in Utah are leading a protest against the Taliban, rallying for support, and hosting a candlelight vigil.
22 hours ago
One of three surviving Navajo Code Talkers, Peter McDonald, broke ground on the Navajo Nation Code ...
Cary Schwanitz

Navajo Nation breaks ground on National Code Talkers Museum

Sunday was National Navajo Code Talkers day and it was a fitting time to break ground on a new museum to honor the Code Talkers who used the Navajo language to create an unbreakable code that helped win World War II.
22 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

tips how to quit smoking...

7 Tips How to Quit Smoking | Quitting Smoking Might be One of the Hardest Things You Ever Do but Here’s Where You Can Start

Quitting smoking cigarettes can be incredibly difficult. Here are 7 tips how to quit smoking to help you on your quitting journey.
Photo: Storyblocks...
Blue Stakes of Utah 811

Blue Stakes of Utah 811: 5 Reasons To Call 811 Before You Dig When Working in Your Yard

Call before you dig. Even at home, you could end up with serious injuries or broken utilities just because you didn't call Blue Stakes of Utah 811.
Days of...
Days of '47 Rodeo

TRIVIA: How well do you know your rodeo? Take this quiz before you go to the Days of ’47!

The Utah Days of ’47 Rodeo presented by Zions Bank is a one-of-a-kind Gold Medal Rodeo being held July 20-23, 25 at 7:30 PM. The Days of ’47 Rodeo How well do you know your rodeo trivia? Take the quiz to test your know-all before heading out to the Days of ’47 Rodeo at the […]
cyber security through multi factor authentication setup...
Les Olson IT

How multi factor authentication setup helps companies stay safe

Multi factor authentication (MFA) setup is an important security measure that every company should implement for their workers. It’s also wise to install it for your personal and home accounts.
Lighting Design

Check out these stunning lamps with stained glass shades

Lamps with stained glass shades are statement pieces that are more than simply aesthetic. They also meet a functional requirement: to light up a room.
Address Bar of internet browser shows internet access...

Utah voters 50+ support increased access to Internet

The AARP surveyed Utah voters aged 50 plus about internet access and if they support the expansion of broadband, especially in rural areas currently lacking it.
Local companies see surge in Black Friday business amid supply chain problems