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Small Businesses Hoping For Better News This Holiday Season

Written by Ken Gaebler
Published: 10/19/2009

A survey from Experian shows consumer spending habits may have changed due to the recession.

After the hard year of 2008, many small business owners are hoping 2009 can recoup some of their declining sales with a better shopping season during Christmas. But last year's recession may have changed spending habits for good, a new survey shows.

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The market research company Experian and PriceGrabber.com survey of consumer spending behaviors revealed that cost-cutting by consumers will continue into the holiday shopping season and set the stage for new trends in holiday shopping.

Fifty-three percent of consumers "are planning to spend less than they did last year," a bad sign for consumer intentions, while 48 percent cite rising costs for necessities and others lower incomes as reasons for spending less.

"This year, consumers are planning to start their holiday shopping long before Black Friday, with 22 percent of consumers starting their holiday shopping in October and 29 percent starting in November," Experian said.

If consumers are trying to save by spreading out their purchases, that could be another sign that businesses won't be getting a boost from holiday spending.

Although it's not great news for small business owners who are already on the brink from skyrocketing healthcare costs and tight lending conditions from banks, some entrepreneurs may be able to swing a good result from effective marketing and sales strategies.

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