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COLLIN COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – Nearly a week after Black Friday sales started, some retailers in Collin County are still seeing red — in terms of revenue. But struggling small businesses are hoping to turn that red into green.

Cortney Woolridge was a welcomed but unusual sight at one store in Plano. “I’m just kind of looking for stocking stuffers right now,” said the shopper from Garland.

Customers like Cortney have been less frequent at Signature Collectibles, where Eddie Fernandez is the manager. “It has been a little slower than usual,” he said. “Internet sales… everything is going to the internet. The world is getting pretty lazy.”

It was the same scene over at Tuscany Jewelers. Owner John Fanous said, “For some reason people are still holding back.”

While big name retailers at The Shops at Willow Bend in Plano know how to draw holiday shoppers, some nearby small businesses struggle to lure customers who aren’t always looking to support them.

Cortney said she doesn’t really think about shopping at small businesses. “That’s something I think is nice to do, but it’s not necessarily a priority of mine.”

Small businesses in Collin County continue to lose ground to online shopping, but they are coming up with new ways to get people to use their cash and credit cards inside.

An autograph signing by a Dallas Maverick this weekend is one way Signature Collectibles hopes to generate a big crowd.

“You have to do different things to create your own ways to bring people,” Fernandez said. “We have signings in our store. It’s not like it used to be where there’s traffic all the time. We have private signings and public signings in our store.”

At Tuscany Jewelers, 70-percent discounts on some rings and personalized service are designed specifically to compete with the internet.

Fanous explained, “It’s hard for the online business to compete with us, because we have items you can actually try on.”

The good news is the shopping season still has three weeks remaining, enough time for the little guys to catch up in the dogfight for Christmas cash.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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