Original Article written by Courtney Highfield for WHP CBS 21
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HARRISBURG, Pa. — A local small business is closing and the owner says part of the reason is not being able to compete with big online retailers.
Creative Elegance has been in business for 32 years but Kathy Cadieux says it’s time to shut the doors and that’s partially because fewer people are physically going to stores like hers to shop.
The retirement is bittersweet because Cadieux loves her store.
“Every day I walk through the doors, my girls come in through the side door and I walk through the front and I stand there and say hi honey I'm home,” said Cadieux.
She says it’s becoming increasingly difficult to compete with Amazon.
“One of the big things that really got to us was people would come in, fall in love with gowns or something, say this is great and clink they've got an app on their phone that they can find this online on amazon,” said Cadieux.
David Black, the CEO of the Harrisburg Regional Chamber & CREDC, says big box retailers are taking the biggest hit from E-Commerce but admits it is hurting small businesses.
“Is E commerce hurting small businesses? Sure. In some cases it’s so much easier to sit in your chair and sit a button and get what you need,” said Black.
But Cadieux and Black both stress there’s something you can’t get while you’re shopping online.
“The advantage of the small business is that they’re here in the community and part of what needs to be done is make the shopping experience personal and enjoyable, that’s what you can’t get online,” said Black.
Even though Cadieux is bowing out she says she wouldn’t trade the past 32 years for anything and she hopes her community will continue to support other small businesses.
“It was a gift from god and this was truly a heaven,” said Cadieux.
CBS 21 reached out to Amazon for comment and is still waiting to hear back.