I want to thank everyone for the support I received after last week’s entry. There were texts and emails sharing stories of loss, and beautiful, heartfelt messages about my Dad and myself. They all meant so much to me. Also, thank you for the purchases that have been made so far, to support my donation to PanCan.org. I will be sure to share how much was raised, at the end of this month.
Shop Small and Shop Local- But Why?
I am sure all of you have heard, year after year, how important it is to support small and local businesses. It is a message we are very familiar with. However, this year, and this holiday season, in particular, it is more important than ever to do just that- support local and support small- because it means everything to them!!
With so many locally owned restaurants and stores closing due to COVID and heading into a time when there will probably be more restrictions placed on them, they need us. And I get it- going to Target or shopping on Amazon is easy. I am guilty of it too. But, what did we do 10-15 years ago...or even 5? We didn’t solely rely on them and we survived, right? It probably will force us to be a bit more organized and plan ahead, but we can do it. Here are the reasons why.
Where Does Your Dollar Go?
An interesting statistic I came across is, according to the American Independent Business Alliance (AIBA), “when you shop local, approximately 48% of the cost of your purchase is recirculated back into the local economy. When you shop at a chain store, that number drops to only 14%.” Reading those numbers were eye opening for me. Our local economies need every dollar right now so that we can come out on the other side of all of this, still intact and thriving.
You Can Find Unique Items
Another reason to “support small” is that you can find unique and personalized items that you wouldn’t find elsewhere. Often times, there is a good story behind them, they have meaning, or support a good cause. Keep in mind that many shops are offering virtual, personalized shopping experiences or by appointment only. So you can support them and find your unique items- all from the comfort and safety of your home- or shop by yourself, if you are able to get out, but are hoping to avoid small crowds. Also, many stores have moved inventory to their website, as well, so that is an option for most local, small shops. Reach out to them and see what options they are offering. They will be so appreciative that you did!
Shopping local offers a sense of community and boy do we need that right now! In a world where everything is virtual and from a distance, seeing familiar faces (even if it is partially hidden by a mask) connects us.
Support Without Spending
Lastly, if shopping is not on your agenda right now, you can support those same businesses on social media. Following, liking, commenting, posting- they all help to boost their presence online which means that more people will “see” them and support them, as well. Also, if you have purchased something in the past from them, but haven’t left a review, now is the time to do that! One glowing review goes a long way.
This is a sign/quote I have seen in quite a few places recently, but I can’t credit an author:
“When you buy from a small business, an actual person does a little happy dance.”
I absolutely do a little shimmy every single time I get a notice on my phone that a purchase has been made. I can’t imagine that the people at the “big box stores” do the same! :)
As always, thank you for reading.