ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Whether it’s shopping or eating local, the Big Country has plenty of small businesses for people to enjoy. Now with various economic challenges, many of those small businesses are at risk of closing down.

Courtney Hill started her business Eighteen78, two years ago. She recently has seen other businesses close or struggle, which makes her think about the future of her boutique.

“It does make me anxious, I’m nervous every day because we want customers. You know you can go to Target, Walmart, all the big box stores, but you’re not going to get one on one attention,” Hill explained. “You’re not going to get that personal touch like we, as small business owners, can give you. We get to know our customers and we make friends and that’s what small businesses are about.”

Makenna Hill, Co-owner of The Bee’s Knees Salon and Shoppe, shared the hardest part about having a small business to her: all the funds owners have to reinvest.

“It takes about five years for you to actually make a solid profit when you start a business. So up until that point, you’re just investing,” added Hill.

Doug Peters, President and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce, said one small business closing down is one too many, but multiple factors are currently at play.

“The difficulty of finding employees. If you think about the fact that we had supply chain challenges recently and, in some cases, we still do,” shared Peters.

Peters said it’s important, now more than ever, to support small businesses to ensure these places stay in the key city.