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I will admit I have never been super aware of shopping small. It wasn’t until this past year and a half that I realized small businesses need our help, especially after witnessing the downfall of many local businesses due to the pandemic. They rely on their local community to come in to shop, and when the community is choosing to support huge franchises including clothing stores, restaurants, and coffee shops, it’s really detrimental to the people trying to stay in business. 

While I am still working on trying to shop small in my everyday life, I think it’s important to spread the word on how shopping locally can change someone’s life. I pulled together my top reasons for shopping small, and wanted to pass along my knowledge to as many people willing to read this blog post! Maybe if you aren’t familiar with the importance of shopping locally, I can give you some clarity on that :) . 


The most obvious reason to support a small business is because it helps enhance these local establishments. It’s important to shop at these small stores not only to help fund the business, but because it could give them the opportunity to grow in the future. And if these businesses end up growing, it will give more job opportunities to people in the community. If we want to get more technical, the more money these businesses make, the more money gets put into local city funds. This money can be used to create more businesses or update certain residential neighborhoods in order to attract more people to the area.


Something about sharing a common interest in a shop or restaurant with people from your hometown resonates with me. It gives me a feeling of nostalgia. When I think of a local business in my small town, I immediately think of our bagel shop. Every Sunday morning, the line would be out the door, and you would see at least 10 people you knew. While I obviously am going there for the delicious bagel, a part of me loves to see how the people in my town have made going to the bagel shop a weekend ritual. Shopping locally can also give you the chance to get to know these business owners on a more personal level. These entrepreneurs usually have much better customer service than any big chain store. The conversations are much more engaging, and you can tell they truly care about their customers.


Local businesses give such character and personality to small towns. My favorite thing is how each town has their own businesses that are unique to them, and are a huge part of that town’s culture. Each local business has their own reputation that is a part of how people view their hometown. Not only that, but these businesses give people the best memories and stories. Whenever I walk down Main Street where I’m from, I remember certain moments from each of the businesses that are there now or that used to be there. I can point out the building where the tea room was where I had my 6 year old birthday party, and across the street happens to be the restaurant I ate at after my high school graduation. No matter how many years go by, or how many local businesses have gone in and out of my town, I will never forget the uniqueness of these places that made my childhood special.


While there are so many reasons to shop small that help improve the business, these actions can also impact you. Although you might not get any physical benefits, deep down you know you are helping the owner, business, and town thrive. Not only that, but you just have a more fulfilling shopping or dining experience. Knowing that you are surrounded by people that want to support the small business as much as you do probably is a good feeling. While you can say you support every other business the same way, it means more to the community when you shop locally. The money is put to good use in order to benefit the whole town. Something about seeing your local community succeed is such a good feeling.

Whatever you all are up to this weekend, I hope you can find a way to support one of your favorite local businesses :)