Supporting Local Business.
It’s not uncommon to hear people saying that you should support your local businesses. However, during the current coronavirus public health crisis, it is ever more critical that we understand what a difference we can make by spending our money closer to home.
So, what does it mean to support local businesses?
Well, many local businesses are small operations, although they are important to the local economy and can offer significant employment opportunities in your local area.
Supporting Local Business
But why should you choose to spend your money with local businesses, when you might be able to get similar goods or services from a national or even an international chain that you access online or in a shopping mall?
Here’s why you should be supporting local businesses at every opportunity.
> You are Putting Your Money into the Local Economy
> Local businesses need the custom to grow and thrive
> You are Supporting Local Employment
When you spend money locally, it is estimated that over 60% of this money will stay in the local economy. This is compared to 40% when spent in larger, national chains.
Where many areas and high streets will often have empty shops or offices, local authorities are now encouraging local businesses to open with obvious benefits to the local economy. With this approach in mind, many local events are now planned, prior to the current lockdown, to help encourage increased visits to the shopping areas.
It is also thought that in towns and cities where local businesses have been encouraged to flourish, house prices typically rise in value faster than the national average.
It Creates a More Diverse Local Area
How many towns and cities do you know that are primarily made up of streets full of the same shops and restaurants?
You may know precisely what you’re going to expect from a major chain, but it does lead to towns and cities becoming bland, homogeneous, and indistinguishable from each other. Often, this leads to the character of the local area being lost.
In towns and cities where independent businesses have been encouraged, you will often end up with much more character. Small local businesses help make shopping become a new and exciting experience, and you may find specialist products that are not available in the major chain stores.
Buying Local Supports Local Jobs
One of the major benefits of supporting a local business is that you will be enabling them to hire and retain local workers. The more customers a business receives, the more employees they’ll need.
During these difficult and uncertain times, the need for more local jobs is without doubt of increased importance.
Support Your Local Entrepreneurs
If you support local businesses, you’re encouraging local innovation. In many towns and cities, there may not be opportunities to develop business ideas, products, or brands.
Local entrepreneurs may be involved in helping others through support, training, or mentorship. They may also have substantial involvement in local charities. This will also help build a stronger local community.
Better Quality of Service
When you shop at an independently owned business, you’ll often find that you’ll receive a higher standard of service. If the business is run by its owners, the people serving you will have the strongest incentive to deliver a memorable service.
Even when the service is not being delivered by the company owner, you’ll find that the employees that you come into contact with will care more about their job and the workplace than they might if they worked for a much larger company.
If you have a locally grown brand, you’ll feel more of a natural affinity with it. This will also be felt by many others in the local community.
Many small businesses are community-focused. You may find bookshops that will run book clubs or cafes and pubs that run quizzes or other events. Often, these events are a great place to connect with others from your local area.
Supporting Local Business is Better for the Environment
Many smaller local businesses will be more environmentally conscious. They may try and source their supplies and produce from other local businesses. This leads to a supply chain with a low carbon footprint. If local businesses are within walking distance of many of their customers, there will also be less need for people to drive to them. Again, this helps reduce the pollution associated with the business.
Hopefully, you will see the many potential benefits of going local with your business. Next time you go shopping, why not consider if you can get what you need from a local supplier.