Extra hours bringing more customers to Picayune businesses

Published 7:00 am Saturday, July 14, 2018

By extending their hours of operation, business owners in downtown Picayune are expecting to see an increase in customers.

On every third Thursday of the month until August 16, several stores in downtown Picayune have been staying open until 7 p.m. in an attempt to attract more customers to their stores.

Bob Gibson of Gibson House Antiques said his store attracted 11 people on the first Thursday of his extended hours, most of them new customers who were unable to shop there during his regular business hours because they worked.

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“People work until 5:30 p.m., so it becomes difficult for them to come over, so extended hours help,” he said.

Gibson said he would like to keep his store open later at least two to three days a week and is hoping other merchants across downtown consider doing the same. 

Few other business owners believe that it’ll take a couple more weeks until this effort gains momentum.

Tony Smith of Stonewall’s said he did not see a boost in business by staying open later, mostly because he has regular customers who come at certain times. Even so, he supports anything that will bring more people downtown.

Smith said he hopes Picayune Main Street continues to promote staying open later in the day.

“To be a true judge we have to do it multiple times and break the mindset that you have to leave Picayune to go shopping,” Smith said.

He added that it appears that more and more store fronts have  been rented, which is an example of the good job Picayune Main Street is doing.