Tag: Around The Way app

Small Business Saturday: Shop Small and Make a Big Impact on Black Small Businesses This Holiday Weekend

Zuli and her mom, Olga, co-founder of Flecks Coffee Company
Zuli Turner and her mom, Olga Turner, co-founder of Flecks Coffee Company.

Just like that, the holiday shopping season has arrived — quicker than you could ask for more turkey. While megastores and online retailers are serving up another year of Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, mom-and-pop shops are strategizing to get black consumers off the couch over the weekend. Sandwiched in between those two shopping days is Small Business Saturday, a day dedicated to supporting small businesses across the country.

Now in its fourth year, Small Business Saturday (founded by American Express in 2010) has aggressively recruited and engaged black entrepreneurs to participate in the annual event in order to benefit from the holiday season sales spike.  It is also an opportunity for black consumers to shop smart — not only in terms of savings, but also in a way that is community-based and socially conscious.

Why black small businesses matter

“Small businesses really keep our communities grounded,” says Zuli Turner, co-founder of the Chicago-based Flecks Coffee Company. “You know your money is going to hire people that work in the neighborhood and be recycled many times over. We even buy our produce and flowers locally.” Flecks Coffee is one of the many small, black-owned businesses hoping to gain big by a program that encourages customers to shop small.

Black buying power is anticipated to reach $1.1 trillion by 2015. Recognizing this influence on businesses and communities, American Express has teamed up with organizations like the National Urban League and the U.S. Black Chamber of Commerce to create a “Neighborhood Champions” program that has organized Small Business Saturday events throughout the country. To date over 1,000 Neighborhood Champions have signed up to rally businesses in their municipalities to partake in local activities leading up to and on the day.

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Find Local Black Businesses with Version 2.0 of Around The Way iPhone App

iPhone 4S (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)Around the Way is an app for your iPhone or Android device that helps its users locate black owned businesses. The app is important because it uses technology to combat social issues that often deter minority own businesses from thriving.

Around the Way App Version 2.0 has a pretty intuitive interface, which mimics the native iPhone maps App. This makes it very simple to use and pick up right away to help you locate black owned businesses using your phone. When you open the App, you’re greeted with a scroll bar at the top, which groups black businesses by good and services that range from  beauty shops, barbers, banks and restaurants.  There are also several tabs below, which allow you to view all of the black businesses in a certain area, search for specific stores or add a black business that you may have spotted.

One of the cool features of the app is the ability to favorite locations. This app is all about supporting black businesses so this feature makes it easy for you to become reoccurring customers once you book mark your favorites spots. Business owners and entrepreneurs have the ability to add their own business to the Around The Way App Directory directly from their phone.

article by Sajjad Musa via thegrio.com