Marketing for Small Businesses

Four Key Reasons to Shop Local

“Shop Local” is a slogan prevalent nationwide, in the form of advertisements, bumper stickers, and word of mouth. While commonly spoken about, it can be difficult to pin down why any consumer would be willing to spend a little bit more at a “mom-and-pop” shop when a chain store in the area will carry products in larger quantities and sometimes for less.

Shopping local means shopping and eating at small, locally owned businesses and restaurants. Chain stores and restaurants, while fantastic for their convenience, aren’t always the best choice when it comes to supporting your local economy. 

1. Get to Know Your Community

One of the most exciting parts of shopping locally is interacting with your community. Small business owners are keen to get to know their clientele, which means you have an opportunity to branch out and be heard! Beyond that, frequenting local shops means that you are likely to meet others that share similar interests. It’s a great way to meet new people when moving to a new area.

2. Support Your Local Economy

According to the American Independent Business Alliance, “Independent retailers return more than three times as much money per dollar of sales than chain competitors” to their local economies. That’s a significant amount of money that could be stimulating your city. Why is this important? It helps fund your schools, keeps the housing market stable, hires local talent, and keeps your city services running!

3. Experience More Product Diversity

This one sounds counterintuitive. Shouldn’t chain stores, which can provide more goods at reduced costs, have more diversity? The answer is no! Local shops are directly impacted by what locals like and the personal tastes of business owners! This means that, by shopping locally for clothes and goods, you actually get more variety than a trip to a big box, chain store would provide. At the business owners know their stuff. They are educated in the products they carry. You can learn where its made, why they chose it and more from the owner directly! 

4. Cut Down on Waste Production

Shopping at local markets can help cut down on waste in the form of plastics and packagings typically found at chain supermarkets. While this requires some planning, visiting local farmers markets and co-ops is a great way to shop local, cut waste, and find delicious, regionally unique foods that tend to be organic and pesticide free. Additionally, local products and stores don’t need to transport products, the environmental impact is far less than if you shop online. 

What You Can Do?

These are four simple reasons to consider transitioning to shopping locally. Tons more exist! Check out the local chamber of commerce to find out what locally owned shops are near you and how you can engage with your community more actively. You have power…choose where you spend your money

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