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Small businesses in Broken Arrow struggling this holiday season as more shoppers move online

Posted at 8:01 PM, Dec 17, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-17 23:20:59-05

BROKEN ARROW, Okla. -- — It's a smaller crowd than what many businesses are used to seeing. The owner at Vintage Phoenix tells 2 Works for You sales are down about 60 percent compared to their first holiday season six years ago.

"It's not a priority I think anymore and I may be speaking for ourselves but it's not a priority for people to shop and lift their neighbors up anymore," Brandon Zambalis said.

Zambalis said more and more people are going online. He describes this shopping season as empty, and is worried about putting food on this table.

"My wife and I seldom even pay ourselves. We look at it now thinking, we already work 100 hours a week and we're going to need a second job," Zambalis said.

Even stores in the Rose District said they've lost money over the last year, but the Hollow Tree Gifts owner tells us she plans to keep going with the help of the community.

"It is definitely down. It's different times of the day. Usually we had quite a lot of people coming in on Mondays and Tuesdays and those are kind of slow days," JoAnn Rainwater said.

The Vintage Phoenix hosts products from dozens of small businesses across Green Country. But with less business vendors leave, creating less inventory, and making it harder for the store to get people through the door.

"With the way the economy has turned for us we haven't been able to hire anybody so we haven't been able to expand or grow. It becomes a stagnant and stalwart pattern where we just have to kind of figure it out," Zambalis said.

Both store owners say they're hopeful for a last rush of business in the final days before Christmas.

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