POCATELLO, Idaho - Chances are, you're done with your holiday shopping, or maybe you've taken advantage of the after-Christmas sales. Local chain stores say they have met holiday sales goals, but one local boutique says she'll be happy to just make last year's final amount.
Cynthia Naftzger of Cynthia Louise Boutique was very nervous the week before Christmas. She had about $7,000 she needed to earn just to break even with last year's numbers, and she didn't know why.
"What is going on? I'm less than half of what I was last year," Naftzger said, "And the year before and the year before that - my very first December - was even better. So it was like, oh my goodness, what is happening?"
Naftzger said she thinks many people are holding tighter to their money.
"I actually had a client come in and say, 'We're just thrifting and regifting this year,'" Naftzger said.
But she also said they've lost several businesses in Old Town Pocatello.
"We lost The Youth Ranch and we lost Gallows," she said. "I think both of those stores brought people into town more often."
But the Idaho Youth Ranch moved just next to Fred Meyer, which would explain why Fred Meyer met earlier holiday projected sales. Pocatello Herberger's also met its goals, as did the Big K-Mart.
ShopperTrak.com (http://www.shoppertrak.com) also stated it has seen a 9% increase in online shopping, something Naftzger said she struggles with. She said it's hard being a small business owner and trying to maintain a full website as well. But she said she has to, if not to keep up with demand for website deals.
"I'm going to try to work a little bit more on that this year," she said. "I'm going to get more pictures and get more things online so people can shop online at my store if it's too cold out or they're too far away."