Small Business Turns to Internet to Attract Sales

Gift basket company reaches customers online

Local businesses may turn to the Internet to get a bigger piece of the holiday shopping season's profits.

Shirley Moon, who runs a gift basket company, said it can be hard to compete with large companies unless you take the product to the shopper.

"As I create a basket, I take a picture of it and I put it on Facebook," she said. "I'm getting a lot of comments on that."

Her Plano-based company, Gratitude From The Heart, is mainly Internet-based.

"Even though I don't have a storefront -- and I had one for 30 years -- I basically feel there's no difference with the Internet presence," Moon said.

Gratitude From The Heart also crafts centerpieces and wreaths, and 'tis the season to be busy.

Unlike large companies, Moon can offer a personal touch -- even with a high volume of customers.

"I've got past history of filling 200-plus orders," she said. "Nothing gives me more pleasure than seeing that big order, knowing that I can make someone happy."

Online shopping could account for up to 40 percent of total purchases during November and December.

And online sales could jump 15 percent over 2010, according to some estimates.

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