10 Reasons Why You Should Support Community Businesses This Holiday Season
In an increasingly globalized world, it’s easy to rely on big-box retailers – especially around the holidays. However, small businesses are the foundation of our communities, which is why it’s as important as ever to shop local this holiday season, whether in-store or online.
1. Buy local to support yourself. Studies show that when you buy from an independent, locally-owned business, rather than a nationally-owned one, significantly more of your money is used to make purchases from other local businesses, service providers, and farms, continuing to strengthen the economic base of the community.
2. Be friendly to our environment. Locally owned businesses can make more local purchases requiring less transportation and generally set up shop in town or city centers as opposed to developing on the fringe. This generally means contributing less to sprawl, congestion, habitat loss, and pollution.
3. Support community groups. Non-profit organizations receive an average of 250% more support from smaller business owners than they do from large businesses.
4. Keep our community unique. Where we shop, where we eat, and where we have fun – all of it makes our community home. Our one-of-a-kind businesses are an integral part of the distinctive character of this area. Our tourism businesses also benefit when we shop local.
5. Local businesses create more jobs. Small local businesses are the largest employer nationally, and in our community, provide the most jobs to residents.
6. Get better service. Local businesses often hire people with a better understanding of the products they are selling and take more time to get to know customers.
7. Invest in your community. Local businesses are owned by people who live in this community, are less likely to leave, and are more invested in the community’s future.
8. Put your taxes to good use. Local businesses require comparatively little infrastructure investment and make more efficient use of public services as compared to nationally-owned stores entering the community. In addition, nationally-owned businesses often demanding tax incentives.
9. Encourage future investment. A growing body of economic research shows that in an increasingly homogenized world, entrepreneurs and skilled workers are more likely to invest and settle in communities that preserve their one-of-a-kind businesses and distinctive character.
10. Competition leads to more choices. A marketplace of tens of thousands of small businesses is the best way to ensure innovation and low prices over the long-term. A multitude of small businesses, each selecting products based on their own interests and the needs of their local customers, rather than on a national sales plan, guarantees a much broader range of product choices.
Reprinted with permission by Shop Local Raleigh, a non-profit organization dedicated to connecting, supporting, and growing locally-owned, independent businesses to strengthen and enrich our community. For more information, visit shoplocalraleigh.org.