Small business is often referred to as the engine of economic growth in America. Unfortunately, small businesses are closing at a faster rate than they are being created – which is bad news when it comes to local jobs and communities. For example, when you shop at a big box retailer, very little of your money stays in your community. Luckily, there are some easy ways that you can show small businesses big love and support.
1. Shop Local Online
Shopping local doesn’t mean that you have to visit a brick-and-mortar store in-person. That’s because many locally-owned also have websites to take online orders – just like big box retailers and e-commerce sites. For example, some smaller grocery chains let customers order groceries online and offer delivery services. In addition to shopping for goods, you can also order takeout or delivery food online from some of your locally-owned restaurants. The next time you consider buying something online from a large retailer, try to find a local small business in your community with an e-commerce site to shop from instead.
2. Promote Your Favorite Small Businesses to Others
Many small business owners say that word-of-mouth advertising is still one of the best ways to promote their products or services to others. In fact, many small restaurants and stores survive off customer referrals – especially in the beginning. Therefore, you can help support your favorite small businesses by telling friends and family about your happy shopping experiences. For example, if someone asks you about a certain product/service category, you could recommend a small business that serves that particular niche. You could also tell others about your favorite locally-owned businesses on social media – especially Facebook.
3. Gift Small Business Gift Cards to Friends and Family
Gift cards have become a very popular gift in recent years. However, you don’t have to just give gift cards for big retailers. Instead, you can likely find a small business in your community that sells their own gift cards. For example, you can probably find a gift card for locally-owned restaurants, gift shops, flea markets, and even some grocery stores. Of course, you will want to try to find a small business that you think the recipient would enjoy shopping at.
4. Buy from Small Amazon Sellers
Lastly, there are actually two ways that you can support small businesses when you shop on Amazon. First, when you buy from a small seller – instead of purchasing something sold by Amazon or another large retailer – you are supporting a small business. Secondly, if you read product descriptions, you can also learn about where products were made – including the companies that make them. Therefore, with a little research, you could buy products made by small businesses.
In short, since small business is the backbone of the American economy, consumers should do their part to support them to promote stronger communities and more local job opportunities. Remember, when you spend money at a locally-owned retailer, more of your money stays in your community. You can help support small businesses by telling others about them. For example, when a new store or restaurant opens in your community, encourage others to give it a try.
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