Shop Local. How many times have we heard this phrase, especially during the holiday season?
When we consider how many local businesses we are surrounded with, it’s inspiring to note their significance and perseverance in competing against bigger chains and franchises in our economy today. Entrepreneurship is the core of doing something we love, and it’s impressive to think how much time, commitment, and effort small business owners contribute into their businesses to make it come to life and stay alive. As consumers, when we shop local, we are giving more than just our money to local businesses. We are giving them value, sustainability, opportunities and helping their dream grow.
Aside from the personalized customer service and the better quality of product while shopping local, there are many more beneficial reasons that meet the eye. Here are seven easy ways that you can give back to your community when you spend a few bucks at a local store:
Giving Support to Local Economy
For every dollar we spend on a local business, we are more likely to return three times more money back to our community! Recently, Small Business Saturday conducted a study where it states that “every $68 out of $100 dollar spent at a local business stays within the community, whereas only $43 within a large retailer”. Conclusively, this means when we support local, we are recycling a much larger of our revenue back and enriching our community as a whole. In return, local businesses are more than likely to donate to charitable causes and organizations locally and nationally as they are very invested in the community.
Giving Recognition To The Creators And Their Stories
As we get busier, it becomes harder and harder to set time aside to meet people in our neighborhood. By shopping local, we have the chance to get to know the face behind the products, and the story behind their business. Ultimately, local businesses are our community’s social networking sites, linking each other in a web of social and economic relationships. This simply means that not only are we building our community as a whole, we are also giving an opportunity to build relationships with one another when we support local. We become their very own storytellers, brand ambassadors, and friends.
Giving The Opportunity To Stimulate Creativity
Entrepreneurs strive to be innovative in all aspects of their work, and they are damn proud of it. Although bigger merchants have a larger footprint within our communities, local businesses often offer diversity and a slightly larger inventory. When we shop local, not only are we getting top notch personable customer service, we also have the opportunity to customize what we want on an item that we like. This in turn helps stimulate creativity within local artisans and designers, and may even challenge them to think outside of the box. Local business owners hear what we are saying right then and now, and they are motivated to act on our needs and desires.
Giving Our Community A Style And Voice
With the talent and creativity of our local artisans, crafters, farmers, and fellow entrepreneurs, each business helps our community and neighborhood develop a sense of unity and belonging. Curators tend to sprinkle some of their personality and style into each and every single product they make, making them all unique and one of a kind. If that doesn’t give the community character, what does! Unique is what allows our community to be a top shopping destination for international shoppers and travelers; therefore can increase our tourism ranking, as well as the overall value of our homes and properties in our community.
Giving A Family A Meal On The Table
99% of the time when we shop at a retailer, we don’t know where our money goes. However, when we decide to shop local, we are helping a neighbor or friend in need. Every dollar received is precious and meaningful to them. That money is going towards their groceries for the week, their kids’ college fund, or maybe even towards a family’s hospital bill. Nurture your local business owners and support them like you would to a close friend or relative.
Giving support to Sustainable Local Resources
Most local business owners are committed to three things: quality of product, health, and environment. Their products are usually organic and handmade to embody a healthy way of living, while also looking to sustain a green environment by reducing any effects of climate change, pollution, or chemical poisoning. Sustainable consumerism is intentional consumerism, therefore when we shop local, not only are we being conscious of our personal health, but also acknowledging that we need to support those who are working fierecly and tirelessly to produce products that do not endanger public health.
Giving Value And Meaning To Their Products
A shirt simply isn’t “just a shirt” when we purchase it from a local business. There is more to it – from the manufacturing process, the design, the fabric, right down to the methods of marketing, there is a story behind it. When we purchase from a local business, we have an increased knowledge of what we are wearing, eating, and using.
Local businesses are the backbone of our cities, and not only have they became a popular trend, but also a lifestyle. When we shop local, not only are we giving someone a gift, we are giving them a gift of love, opportunity, and talent. Shopping local means you’re rooting for that person and their dream. So start embracing it in your everyday life. Whether it be trying a menu out at a local restaurant, joining a local gym, or visiting a local hardware store for any of your gardening needs, discover what hidden gems are surrounded around you to help build a successful and supportive community.