The streets of Lansing's Old Town were pretty quiet on Black Friday. A far cry from the images we're used to seeing at local shopping malls and big box stores, but just what Nan Polleys was looking for.
"It's just very friendly and nice to shop locally," she said.
On a day like Black Friday, a friendly, calm experience is the big draw for some. That's what Sarah Christiansen is going for with her store, Katalyst, and it's working.
"We're just a really good and relaxed atmosphere, where people can come in and shop and have a really good customer experience," said Christiansen.
And when you find something you like, there's a good chance you won't find it anywhere else. Another selling point. But, above all else, the best way to compete with the national chains is through quality of service.
"When you come in here and you let us know what you're looking for, somebody's going to make sure they can help you find it," said Summer Schriner, who owns 'Grace' in Old Town.
That's what keeps the customer coming back and it's also the key to keeping the local shops open.
With Meridian Mall across the street, Small Business Saturday and the overall push to shop locally is crucial to a successful holiday season for Brilliant Sky Toys and Books in Okemos.
"The whole 'Shop Small' movement is growing every year," said Owner Brent Taylor. "More and more people want to keep their money in the community and the response to it has been great."
Small Business Saturday first started in 2010 and is always the day after Black Friday.