The History of Mom-and-Pop Shops and How To Support Them Today

The History of Mom-and-Pop Shops and How To Support Them Today

March 29, 2023

The History of Mom-and-Pop Shops and How To Support Them Today


Mom-and-pop businesses have held a special place in the hearts of American consumers since the beginning of retail commerce in the USA. These family-owned, small businesses were America’s backbone before larger corporations began to take over and drive them out of business. These shops started to dwindle in the face of the competition from the big-box stores. However, they are now seeing a resurgence as consumers promote local shopping and build community support for local businesses.

Mom-and-Pop Shops: A Little Background

During the 19th century and continuing into the following one, grocery markets, pharmacies and specialty shops were mainly family-owned. They provided employment, products and services for those in the community. Even though larger businesses were beginning to grow toward the later part of the 19th century, most Americans still patronized these small local businesses.1

These shops continued their heyday until department stores became prevalent in the early 20th century. These department stores provided a wide range of products, all in one location, and for lower prices than the mom-and-pop shops could offer. The decline continued with the development of malls and big box stores as shoppers sought lower prices and greater convenience.1

While many of these operations suffered as shopping moved more toward large corporations, they have recently seen a resurgence in the past decade as some shoppers want to support their local small businesses to keep their money in the community to benefit those who live there.1

Supporting Mom-and-Pop Shops Is Easy

Even though small, local-owned businesses are steadily making a comeback, they still need support. Supporting your local mom-and-pop shops may help keep employment and spending in your local community, which may benefit you, your family and your neighbors. 2

Help support your local small businesses by:

  • Providing them with free word-of-mouth advertising
  • Supporting them with positive reviews on social media
  • Following their social media, sharing their posts and recommending them to people on your social network
  • Purchasing their products and services whenever possible
  • Being a repeat customer and taking advantage of any loyalty programs
  • Buying gift cards from them for gift giving
  • Supporting and promoting them on small business Saturday

Mom-and-pop shops impacted the American economy for generations. Although they experienced some ups and downs, the ones still in business overcame the challenges and continued providing valuable services, products and resources for their local communities. By supporting small local businesses, you help preserve the American spirit and the continued drive to live the American dream.

Important Disclosures:

The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.

All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however LPL Financial makes no representation as to its completeness or accuracy.

This article was prepared by WriterAccess.

LPL Tracking # 1-05355833.


1 A Brief History of American Mom-and-Pop Shops


2 How You Can Support Mom and Pop Businesses All Year Long