Talking about supporting local businesses has been a topic of interest for a while. The interest-only increased when the pandemic fully hit in 2020, causing businesses to close, or others start to fail while we were in quarantine. It’s very easy to go to a larger chain for your supplies, especially in difficult time periods because you know what to expect, you know they have the support to mostly keep their shelves stocked, or you know if you need a midnight snack fix they’ll probably be open. So why shop locally? Why support local businesses?
The benefits of shopping locally become a chain of events that ultimately comes back around in a positive way. Below, you’ll read about seven reasons why you should support local businesses, and how it benefits the community.
1. Supporting local businesses helps support local economy
Local businesses are more prominent in our communities than we realize, because of this the benefits of supporting small businesses owners are also more powerful than we think. When we support local businesses, we also support local banks, phone and internet providers, or even local grocers and farmers. This is because locally owned businesses are more likely to work with other local chains or businesses, the revenue given to them flows back into the community, strengthening the economy.
2. Local businesses are more likely to support local organizations
When small businesses or local organizations support each other, they grow together and are able to accomplish their goals or meet the needs of their community easier. Supporting small means supporting not just their family or their business, but it also means supporting local non-profits like food programs, shelters, or programs that help other families. Going back to the first reason why you should support local businesses, the support given to the small businesses flows back into the community and ultimately helps everyone.
3. Typically small businesses have a smaller carbon footprint
Supporting a local or small business is also better for the environment! Small businesses tend to have a smaller carbon footprint in comparison to larger or national businesses. This is again because they tend to source directly from their community on the items they can. Usually, when you source locally you’re less likely to produce more waste either in the air or packaging for shipping, which directly helps the environment by lowering trash and allowing items to be recycled.
4. They could be your neighbors
Caring for your neighborhood is one of the first ways you can support your local community. Especially in these hard times, looking out for each other is important and if your neighbor has a business, supporting them only supports their family, their children, and ultimately you! When we care for one another we show respect towards each other and our community, which helps it grow and become a place of safety. It fosters a sense of pride and a sense of ownership that encourages others to continue supporting each other.
5. Local businesses help support job growth
Supporting local businesses supports job growth! According to mass.gov “Small businesses employ 77 million Americans and accounted for 65% of all new jobs over the past 17 years.” Local economic growth is something we don’t necessarily think about, but it’s important. It helps schools gain funding, recreational programs continue, and it helps others stay employed. When we continue to support local businesses and our local community, we find that the impact is lasting. They’re able to grow and hire more people or pay their current employees more which will only contribute back to the growth of the community.
6. Small businesses tend to have higher-quality services
Small businesses are active members of the community, so they have a reputation to uphold. Whether it’s quality items, good food, or any other fantastic selling point, they have to stay true to how they started to keep their current customers and gain new ones. They rely on community support to keep their business open and to continue living their dream. So quality and standards are important for their businesses, which means their customers are getting more for what they’re paying for. When you continue to shop local you continue allowing small business owners to keep providing that quality the community has grown used to and allows them to uphold a reputation they’ve worked hard for.
7. Supporting each other is important.
In the end, you can boil down the benefits of supporting local business into one point; it supports your community. Regardless of if the small business owner is your neighbor, they’re helping employment rates or donating to organizations, you should support local and small businesses because you should care about your community. The benefit and betterment of others are what create a space where others feel safe and thrive, and being able to be a part of that is rewarding enough.
If there’s a local business you enjoy, or maybe a local restaurant you have tried yet, we definitely encourage you to give it a shot! Or, with the holiday seasons upon us, you can try buying a gift card or even donating to a local cause. No matter how you choose to support big or small, your continued business is important to small business owners and your community.