Have you heard enough about Black Friday? Small Business Saturday, Something-Important-Sunday and Cyber Monday are on progressive minds. Cyber Monday, in particular, is expected to reach record sales this year. The world is much safer with some of us on-line than standing in-a-line. I am not the only one to be bored, frustrated and overwhelmingly tempted to tap the person in front of me with the shopping cart. "Oops. Pardon me." "Oh, dear. Did I do that again?" Last year, the exasperated man in front of me was so rude to the cashier that after 30 minutes, I rammed him. When I looked behind me to blame it on several carts behind, I realized the line was ten elderly people deep and I just couldn't let them take the fall. That episode cost me a beer, and I am not the only one avoiding a replay this year. According to Morpace, 75% of holiday shoppers plan to shop online this year. Does this mean that we have become an anti-social society? It means that we are choosing wider access to holiday shopping in the same manner that we are seeking wider access to finance and a great many other functions. Would you rather spend 8 hours in traffic arriving at a limited number of stores and risk wait-rage, or spend 4 hours bidding on 3 non-profit Facebook auctions, while nabbing deals on amazon and several other websites at the same time. I can save for years to invest in a home, or I can partner with other investors on a crowdfunding platform and reap the benefits of a better investment. Maybe your shopping experience will combine a bit of in-store shopping and on-line shopping. No matter how you approach it, times are changing and our growing communities are defining the priorities.
The recent televised announcements that some stores will close on Thanksgiving left me blankly staring at the tv. Stores were open on Thanksgiving?! Clearly, my shopping prowness is long gone. Trends benefitting shoppers are benefitting those working as well. ~Another logical demand of today's growing communities. Out of 1000 people surveyed, only 35% will be shopping solely in-store on Black Friday. The rest will be shopping on line and in-store, or on-line only, and they won’t be limited to black Friday. It would be odd for Employer-Thug-Thursday to bring any greater success when we have Small Business Saturday, Something Important Sunday, and Cyber Monday boasting better deals and access to more volume. You may be wondering what this has to do with real estate crowdfunding? Investing in communities through recognizing and contributing to the trends of our social-good focused investors pays in many ways. Modes of shopping are just as important as what people are shopping for and how they are financing what they are purchasing. Our time is precious. Our lives are precious. Our relationships are precious. The tragedy in France has rudely awakened us to the reminder of what is important. For me, it means time. I’ll likely throw a bit more caution to the wind and buy more for people this year. More importantly, every move I make will be taken with the forethought of how I can accomplish what I need while preserving time with those that I love.
Give me coffee, my computer, a dog on my lap and a warped friend cracking jokes. I’ll take that over knocking down old ladies to reach the last iPad any day. Clearly, many others feel the same. This is predicted to be the most successful Cyber Monday yet. Who was it that mentioned we could see up to $3Billion dollars spent on Cyber Monday this year? When you find the answer, send us a comment below, so that we can share. Amazon will earn some of the billion-dollar focus. 87 percent of the on-line shoppers surveyed by Morpace plan to shop on Amazon. If coffee and a computer can gain access to financing homes, then we can certainly use it to satisfy holiday gift giving lists. Fog-lifter coffee beans and early morning Amazon could have some shoppers completely satisfied by noon on Cyber Monday. That is when we’ll all meet to waddle off our weekend feast and walk the turkey-fed-tooting dogs. Maybe you’ll find large groups of neighbors gathering like they're family to talk about the time they had serving at the soup kitchen on Thursday. They weren’t shopping. Maybe you’ll hear them talk about the Frozen friends they had time to blanket on Friday, because they weren’t shopping. Saturday, Sunday and Monday shopping options leave even more community building leisure time. While some brave characters will traverse the Black Friday store wars, 19 percent of shoppers are expected to use tablets and 22 percent plan to use their smart phone to satisfy their shopping lists from home. I think the blackest part of Friday will be the rarely seen bare pavement of empty parking lots.
Growing Communities on Small Business Saturday
Would you like to avoid the large chain shopping centers and on-line merchandisers? Think of the annual Amex powered Small Business Saturday: Another sign of conscious times. Amex started the “Shopping Small” endeavor in 2010 to encourage and revitalize growing communities.
Shoppers are encouraged to bring business to mom-and-pop shops and encourage local economies. It sounds fairly simple. Search for participating local merchants, then shop and earn statement credits. Last year, Amex credited pre-registered cards up to $30 dollars. EventBrite, FedEx and the United States SBA (Small Business Association) have all participated in some way to ease the expense to small business owners and make your shopping experience rewarding. Neighbors have already started rallying their communities. Some have organized scavenger hunts involving each local business on Saturday, November 28th this year. This is the essence of Patch of Land’s ever evolving focus on growing communities through progressive minds.TUFF DOG BAKERY in Sterling, IL expresses this well: “We are stronger in numbers. The national movement about shopping small is gaining more momentum every year.”
Something Important Sunday - The Patch Of Land Way
Patch of Land's own suggestion for the day in between: simplify, downsize and appreciate. Instead of cluttering our shelves with more stuffed elves, some of us will buy the gift of life for another. We'll support and revitalize growing communities one socially-good investment at a time. Whether it be rebuilding the broken human, or sparing a shelter dog’s life, what a gift it would be to have someone make a donation in another's name to something that will last forever. YOUCARING's Compassionate crowdfunding would be a great way to spend the Sunday in-between. Non profit organizations raise up to 40% of their income in the last few weeks of the year. You can make a difference and fulfill your holiday shopping:
- Raise money to provide meals to the homeless.
- Donate to your local shelter and ask to photograph a dog who will benefit from your donation. Then, frame that photograph with a note that reads “I am one step closer to finding forever, because of someone like you. ~signed, Tucker-the-dog.”
- With a 40% upturn in suicide rates after Christmas, why not donate toward a local suicide hotline and raise money for mental health?
- Playing Secret Santa to someone important? Why not help start a compassionate crowdfunding campaign on you caring to raise money for their favorite cause?
Remind your loved-ones of the value of compassion, and gift yourself with the karmic revolve of generosity. How can we celebrate the holidays guilt-free in the wake of our Paris tragedy? Giving to a life, whether here or abroad, is an empowering alternative to the materialistically mundane. No matter what your end-of-year reflection brings, make the blood sweat and tears that have been shed change the life of those you can.
Do you enjoy participating in these various shopping events during Thanksgiving weekend? Or are you against the rush of consumerism that can border madness at times? Leave a comment below and let us know how you'll be doing your holiday shopping this year!