Sure, when you need to buy something it’s easy to just head to Amazon — but can shopping with a small business instead make your dollar go further? Shopping at local small business can improve the economy in your area, rather than padding the pockets of a large corporation. While you shouldn’t treat all big businesses as the bad guy — since some small businesses sell products on Amazon, after all — it’s a great idea to consider local businesses first. Here’s why.
Shopping local keeps more money in the local economy.
If you shop at a big box store in your town, some of that money stays in the community. But if you shop at a small business, more of that money stays in the community. A recent study found the difference is between about 43 percent staying locally or 68 percent. Shopping locally with small businesses boosts the economy more than shopping locally from a big chain store.
Get to know your community.
When you shop local, you meet more local community. This can be especially important if you’re also a business owner yourself. Shopping locally can help you network with other businesses that may in return shop at your business. Or, you may simply develop a new relationship with another local, and that’s good too.
Shopping local has a smaller impact on the environment.
Driving out of town to shop and paying for shipments from overseas creates more waste and carbon emissions. Local businesses can be more environmentally friendly, especially if the products are also produced locally. In general, shopping from local businesses has a smaller impact on the environment.
Small businesses are more diverse.
You know that one restaurant or shop in town that’s unlike any other you’ve seen? Small businesses tend to be more unique than large corporations. And the only way to keep that uniqueness going is to support that business when you shop. Keep those odd-but-wonderful mum and dad shops going with local support.
Customer service improves with small businesses.
Large businesses have big support teams — but you’re more likely to start by actually talking to a person instead of a robot when you are working with a small business. If you make a purchase at a small business and need help, chances are, you’ll get better service from that local small business — and you can easily get support in person.
Supporting a range of businesses keeps prices competitive.
What happens if the only thing that’s left are those big box stores? Then those big box stores no longer have to keep their prices low. Shopping with local businesses helps keep that business running. The more businesses that are running, the more competition there is. The more competition there is, the more likely it is that prices will stay low.
There are dozens of different reasons to shop locally and support a small business — especially if you are a small business owner yourself. Support a local business to boost the local economy, create new relationships, and more.