78% of small business owners say holiday sales will determine whether they remain open in 2022

Downtown Madison lights up for holiday season

MADISON, Wis.– While the economy is slowly beginning to improve, retailers are now wrestling with a long list of new obstacles: from rising inflation to hiring workers.

According to a November 2021 poll by American Express, 78% of small business owners say their holiday sales this year will determine whether they can remain open next.

The numbers are even more dire for new business owners, like Madison’s Katie Stevens.

Stevens opened her fiber, floral, & paint shop, Katie Stevens 608, during the pandemic.

“This was really birthed out of being at home,” she explained.

Less than 20% of all U.S. businesses are owned by women; for Stevens, ownership is about being a role model for her young daughter.

“It’s a privilege being able to teach her all of the things that go into running a business,” Stevens said. “From the cost of goods to how long it takes to create products. She’s even started making some of her own rainbow bracelets to sell.”

While Stevens is already planning for her business’ future, dreaming of hosting in-person classes and participating in more community events, the new owner will first have to make it through this holiday season. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 20% of new businesses close within their first year and just one-third make it 10 years.

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