Date of Award

Spring 2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (BA)


Self-Determined Majors

First Advisor

Andrew Lindner

Second Advisor

Guy Mastrion


Skidmore students are an underutilized customer base for small businesses in Saratoga Springs. The purpose of this thesis is to analyze the purchasing behaviors of Skidmore students in order to determine how local small businesses can better attract them as customers. Current Skidmore students were surveyed and interviewed to ascertain overarching patterns in their purchasing habits. Results show that word of mouth and social media are influential at Skidmore, but are underutilized by local businesses. Findings also suggest that purchasing habits are largely formed during students’ first year at Skidmore. Finally, interview and survey results indicate that Skidmore students most value convenience when making purchasing decisions, and that local businesses must be made more accessible to students on campus in order for them to compete with online commerce sites and on campus options, which students find more convenient. Results were analyzed in order to generate communications, marketing, and business strategies that small businesses can adapt in order to effectively leverage survey and interview insights.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.