By Craig Erwin, Ph.D.
Although it’s tempting to shop in your pajamas, you might consider actually leaving your house so you can patronize local businesses. Although you won’t be able to buy local all the time, the next time you need to shop, check if there is a local alternative. Retail giants like Amazon and Walmart won’t notice if you buy from them or someone else, but a small retailer will not only notice, they will be very appreciative. Although small retailers won’t offer free shipping, you’ll love the personal touch, and the money you spend will help your community instead of lining the pockets of billionaires whose companies make billions and yet may pay fewer taxes than you do.
So, get the word out, encourage friends and relatives to shop locally and guide them to local alternatives. Etsy, Storenvy, and Bookshop provide ways to shop small. Another thing; if you write a review for a purchase from Amazon or Walmart, it will make very little difference, but if you leave online reviews for a small retailer, it really can make a difference and the retailer will be overjoyed. One last thing; shopping at farmers’ markets and street fairs is not only a good way to help local businesses, it’s much more fun and interesting than shopping on Amazon in your jammies. Try the Independent We Stand website, which is designed to help you find local businesses that offer the goods and services you are looking for. Go small!
Where do you prefer to shop? How much of your shopping budget do you spend at small, local businesses? Do you shop at farmers’ markets or street fairs?
For more information on retailers, small businesses, budgeting, and shopping, click on the following links: