CofC students build website to help local businesses

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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – Business students at College of Charleston are trying to help businesses keep up with the digital age and the charleston economy as a whole.

Jody Bell, a sophomore at College of Charleston says watching businesses in the Charleston community take a hit from the pandemic is where the idea of “Impact Hub Charleston” took off.

“All of these businesses were really struggling, and we had to find a way to compete with these digital retailers,” Bell says.

It’s a mission students like Caroline Greer are taking seriously.

“Giant companies like Amazon are really taking over and taking business away from the small companies. Once we had that observation, it was how do we now combat that,” Greer says.

“Impact Hub Charleston” targets locally owned businesses, from gardening suppliers to jewelry stores.

“Finding those businesses in our community and targeting them and starting a conversation and starting a relationship with these sellers,” Bell says.

Business owners like Frankie Riggs for Enlightened Soil Corporation say, it has been a life saver.

“Those independent dollars, those independent sales from just the local economy. It is another way to get our name out there,” Riggs says.

Riggs opened her soil company during the pandemic and says an online platform is keeping her business growing.

“Locally reaching out to people in ways that we couldn’t because you know, you cant go out,” she says.

The students say it’s about more than themselves, it’s about the Charleston community as a whole.

“That support system comes from the city, Mayor Tecklenburg, and it comes from the College of Charleston. It comes from the consumers who want to buy and support local,” Greer says.

The business students encourage any local businesses in need to join in and encourages those in the Charleston community to keep shopping locally.

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