In the past few years local shops and businesses have seen a huge boost in sales as consumers move away from the big faceless retailers found in every town and city, and come to truly appreciate their local, unique craftspeople and entrepreneurs.
Shopping online may be much more convenient these days, but there’s a lot to be said for holding a tangible product in your hands, feeling the quality, seeing it properly or even trying it on. Local businesses may have suffered in the past due to this movement of online shopping, but many are now getting on board with technology and now have online shops as well as their physical storefronts, so you can still get your quick fix of effortless shopping at the click of a button.
As the provenance of products becomes more and more important, local, homegrown produce has become synonymous with quality and excellence, not to mention the impact that local businesses have on building tight knit and cohesive communities. And if these weren’t reasons enough, here are ten more reasons why you should shop close to home and support your local businesses as much as possible:
- Boost your local economy
Keeping things local helps to ensure that your money is being reinvested into the local economy. Local traders are far more likely to spend your money closer to home, boosting the flow of money in your community, raising nearby house prices and even employing locally rather than searching farther afield. Local jobs, and reinvestment back into the surrounding area means a booming economy and a higher chance that your area will flourish.
- You never know what you’ll find
Have you ever bought the perfect dress, shoes or handbag, only to discover that everyone else around you has also discovered these mass-produced items in a chain store? Local businesses are positively bursting with quirky, unique and interesting products that you’re unlikely to find elsewhere.
- It’s the healthy, responsible choice
When it comes to local grocers and food markets, you can almost be sure that the products being offered are fresh, local and in-season. It might be nice to have raspberries all year round, but who knows what processes they’ve undergone to get to the shelves in the first place. Buying locally means less packaging, less air miles and a much smaller carbon footprint too. For clothes and craft shops, you can also rest easy in the knowledge that your goods are manufactured in a safe and ethical environment.
- You get to know the face behind the product
Nothing gives you a sense of belonging quite like popping down to your local shops and saying hello to the customers and staff. Forget faceless corporations who don’t have enough time for you, local businesses put the customer first and devote all of their energies to showing you how much you matter.
- Great customer service
It’s extremely important for small and local businesses to keep their customer’s happy. They can offer a much more personalised and individual experience for customers, and often pride themselves on this point of difference from the larger retailers. From some friendly advice, to a free sample of a product you’re unsure about, this personal touch is enough on its own to keep you coming back.
- Build your community
Local businesses help the community in more ways than you would think. From sponsoring local sports teams and donating to local charities, to organising fun days and serving as a hub for local activities, there are plenty of ways that these businesses contribute to the surrounding community. A lively and prosperous high street or area can also give the community character and attract people from all over. Cafes, bookshops and galleries can also host events, enriching the lives of the people who attend them.
- Closer to home = less travel
It’s in the name: local shops and businesses are just simply a lot closer to home. Aside from saving money on travel by shopping locally, you’re also saving money on parking and saving time that could be spent stuck in traffic. Especially when it comes to lugging all of those bags home at the end of the day, shopping locally is a lot less hassle, and you’re doing your local businesses a favour too!
- Local products mean so much more
When it comes to buying gifts for friends and family, most of the time shopping locally can be so much more thoughtful. Locally made products by artists and craftspeople not only keep these people in business, but they also make unique and thoughtful gifts that you won’t find on every high street. From artisan candles, to local memorabilia, there are loads to choose from when it comes to your local shops and businesses.
- Local businesses care
It’s just common sense to think that those who have been raised in a community, and who continue to raise their own families and build their businesses in a community, care so much more. Not only does caring about their impact and influence on the local community benefit the business itself, it also benefits the residents of that community too. Building and maintaining roots is vital to every community’s success.
- Get exactly what you are looking for
You might think that the big brand retailers have a larger selection of products, just because they’re well…bigger, but smaller more local businesses are usually more than happy to order in or source products specifically for you. With more freedom to stock whatever products they want, rather than sticking to a nationwide stock agreement, local businesses will go all out to please each individual customer.
These are just 10 reasons why you should be supporting your local businesses, and where they came from there are literally dozens more. Whether it’s helping yourself, or helping your community there is no excuse not to spend your money a little closer to home.
Here at Long Game Digital we love our local and independent businesses and work hard with them to ensure that they are reaching the right customers through their digital marketing campaigns. If you think that we could help you, please get in touch with us today on: 08433 832733.