It is important to buy local. Buying local can mean different things for different people – some set a goal of only buying food that has been grown or produced within a certain radius of their homes. Others have a looser understanding of buying local and prefer to buy all their goods from businesses based in the United States.
Many studies have been done about the benefits of buying local. Here are some of the top reasons:
Buy local – a ripple effect
When you spend money at a locally-owned business, studies have shown that more of that money stays in the community and is used in turn to support other independent businesses. For example, if you spend $5 at a local coffee shop, there is a good chance that a portion of that money will be used by the coffee shop to purchase the goods they need at another local business.
On average, local community groups and non-profits receive an average of 250% more in donations and support from small businesses than they do from larger, national businesses.
Keep your community unique
Corner shops, locally owned restaurants, and similar businesses all are a part of what makes your community unique, and they help provide the character of a neighborhood.
More environmentally friendly
Locally owned businesses typically make more local purchases that in turn require less transportation. They also are more likely to set up shop in the heart of a neighborhood or city and contribute less to sprawl, congestion, habitat loss, and pollution.
Create more local jobs
Nationally, local businesses are the largest employer and typically provide the most jobs to residents.
Smaller, local businesses are typically able to be more customer oriented, offering a higher level of knowledge and a greater desire to get to know their customers.
Small business owners are invested in their community, are less likely to leave the community and are more concerned about the community’s future.
Put taxes to good use
Compared to nationally-owned stores that enter a community, local businesses require less infrastructure investment and are a more efficient use of public funds and services.
Buy what you want and need
Small businesses are able to select products based on their interests and local need. National-stores, on the other hand, tend to select products based on national sales plans.
Promote local prosperity
Communities that support local businesses are likely to attract more entrepreneurs and skilled workers that will invest and settle in communities that will support their businesses.