Whether you’re looking to eat or shop, consider doing it locally!
Many times we choose to do business based on the bottom line – the lowest cost we can pay for a good or service. But this is a false sense of value as there is a true cost to your community associated with sending money over to a big, absent, corporation. Cheapness is not the value we should hold highest over all others because it causes us to overlook the value our independent businesses provide on a personal and community level.
By choosing your neighborhood’s small businesses for your dining, shopping, and necessary services, you get personal service as well as value and benefit to your community!
1. Building Community & Keeping Dollars in ‘the Family’. Through conversations with the owners and employees of local businesses and farms, or getting connected to the causes they support, you’re helping to build relationships and closeness in the community. According to Civic Economics and multiple studies, a dollar spent at a local business returns about $3 to the local economy; this stands at a stark contrast to the dollar spent at a corporate or online behemoth.
2. Preserving Local Character. Perhaps it was thought that building towns across the U.S. with the SAME stores seen everywhere else would be comforting to people; however, quite a few find it creepy. Local stores break up the homogenized, corporatized world around us.
3. Entrepreneurship and Diverse Products. Entrepreneurship breeds innovation and choice for the local economy. Additionally, small businesses know the needs of their town and provide their customers a broad, relevant range of products and services.
4. Community Well-Being and Jobs. Local businesses help sustain a unique and vibrant town, connect people through social and financial relationships, and contribute to local causes. Additionally, neighborhood businesses create jobs and may even provide higher wages and better benefits than corporations.
5. Environmental and Public Benefits. Local businesses require less infrastructure and natural resources than multiple-acre box stores. The neighborhood business can be more sustainable as it helps contribute to a more walkable town – reducing sprawl, gas usage, habitat loss, and air & water pollution.
As you shop for the holidays, and beyond, consider local businesses and events which support your neighbors and your community.