By Carlos Correa

STOCKTON (CBS13) — It’s been a tough year for businesses along Stockton’s Miracle Mile, but despite the challenges and more customers shopping online, owners are working hard to stay competitive.

This holiday season, business owners are doing everything can to keep their doors open.

“We have trouble getting people through the door. We really do,” said Maggie Lewis, who helps manage Mag’s Rags Consignment.

The Miracle Mile faced a lot of challenges over the last year that some say have impacted their bottom line.

“It’s negative publicity with the stores that had to close down and with the girl who was in charge with the improvement district, her being in the news, on the news and being fired so, that has hurt too,” said Lewis.

Owners of mom and pop shops like Mag’s Rags Consignment say they can’t really compete with Walmart or Amazon, so they have to try and find creative ways to make a sale.

“We have some really nice things, and we do work with people on prices. If our prices are too high, we still help people out and lower the price a little bit for them,” said Lewis.

At Mr. Otto’s Book Store, customer service is the name of the game.

“I always try to do something special to bring in people, and I don’t know what it is because it changes from moment to moment,” said Otto.

Most stores advertise on the sidewalk or have well lit “Open” signs. Some owners use their creative side to beef up visibility, and others depend on the district’s special events to bring in the crowd.

“It was nice to see people out here, enjoying the miracle mile, it’s the way things used to be, and it would be really nice too, it was a nice feeling of community,” he said.

One store owner told me he started to place some of his merchandise on eBay so that he can make some extra sales and try to compete with other online stores.

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