Local businesses get cold shoulder as storm keeps shoppers at home
Posted January 9
Raleigh, N.C. — Small businesses can really feel the impact of bad weather and many started getting back into the swing of things on Monday.
What may seem like just a couple of days of passing bad weather can have a lingering impact on small businesses and studies have shown the survival of local small business is vital to keeping the revenue stream circulating within local communities.
As the streets of downtown Raleigh begin to defrost, the presence of foot traffic along the sidewalk makes local business owners hopeful.
Leslie Woods is the owner of Raleigh Raw, an organic juice bar and café. For her, the determination to stay open during inclement weather is critical.
“All of our food, all of our juice, all of our smoothies have only a three day shelf life so if a big storm comes through town, we’re in a position where we have to get rid of things,” Woods said.
While much of the area made plans to hunker down, Woods was on the phone with suppliers.
“When the big storms come through, they work with us and they know that we’re going to be ordering less,” she said.
Even though she stayed open Saturday and Sunday, Woods said her revenue took a hit compared to most weekends.
“I would say probably a 50 to 60 percent loss,” she said.
The effects of winter weather run the gamut when it comes to local business.
“We definitely had to cut the schedule and change the times of classes to make sure my teachers could get here as well as students,” said Christina Max, owner of 110 Yoga.
Max said she usually holds four or five classes each day but held none on Saturday, one on Sunday and two on Monday.
Greg Hochreiter is the co-owner of apparel store and café Devolve Moto. He said business was slow, but his location along Glenwood Avenue near downtown Raleigh was his saving grace.
“There’s a fair amount of foot traffic still’ people that don’t want to venture out in their car but still want to get access to the amenities that are around here,” he said.
Slow business doesn’t mean work stops, said Hochreiter, who used the time to think ahead.
‘It gave us a chance to sit in here and take care of some stuff that had been on the back burner for a while that we just hadn’t been able to get through,” he said