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Local business has been clamoring for attention recently. With all the other places to spend your money popping up on TV, in your mailbox, and on your computer, local businesses are faced with trying to match these low-cost places. However, I think some things could, and need to be, changed in order for local businesses to get the business they deserve.

That’s a bold statement? Well, I’m in the group of the most sought after consumers, the 12 to 34 year old age group. The Christmas shopping season is now upon us. So I think this means that business owners and employees could at least hear me out...

And yes, there are areas where almost every store could improve. One big thing is that real stores, unlike online marketplaces, have real physical contact with their customers. This should be used to make the store a better place, not to disgust the buyer! Here are some obvious things that can be fixed with almost all stores.

• Most stores are smoke-free. If you are, at least have the courtesy to put up no smoking signs so they’re easil visible. A smoking customer doesn’t like some little teenager salesperson (such as myself) to come waltzing up to him and remind him, in probably a snotty tone, "Excuse me, sir, but you have to put that out! Neeaahh, put it out! My lungs! You evil person!" Just put up signs, and most people will obey them.

• Also, when putting up No Smoking signs, put ash trays beside them! Why waste your time on that? Well, would you rather have someone flick their cigarette into a garbage can and, unknowingly, start the building on fire? Ah, I'm glad you'll be putting ash trays in...

• Make your store have a nice atmosphere. Aside from having a good-looking store, have salespeople that are knowledgeable , and, more important, friendly. Don't tell employees to follow around "possible shoplifters," either. I myself feel watched just walking into a gas station and simply picking up some "Sno Balls." Imagine what someone with pierced too-delicate-to-mention-here feels like...

Questions? Thoughts? Concerns? Dinner and a movie? Contact us.
Karl Becker, the author of all these articles, uses New Tricks for his writings.

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... Local business has been clamoring for attentio...

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