Doing what you can to keep local businesses afloat is important to the health of your community. It supports not only the local families running these businesses, but the people who depend on the services those families provide as well as the employees of those businesses.
“Shopping small” is a great idea but don’t feel like you have to buy the whole store to support them. There are lots of ways to show your support to local businesses without killing your budget. Here are some of our favorites:
Lots of artists make cards and small personalized drawings that are as affordable if not more affordable than a card you can find at the grocery store. A card can tell a person you care about them and you are thinking of them without having to spend a lot. If you can’t find a local artist, Etsy is a fabulous market for artists who will draw anything you can imagine.
Sending something to a distant friend or relative? No problem, do a small amount of research about their area, find a local shop you know they would like to patronize and buy a gift card from that shop. Even an online store that is specific to their town or area can be just as thoughtful. Giving someone a gift card to somewhere unique and special can make the person receiving it feel unique and special in your relationship.
Show support from home by following all their social accounts, sharing everything they post, boosting with comments, and being vocal about why you like their products so much. Leave comments on their google business accounts, encourage your friends to patronize them and be their hype-man every chance you get.
Write a thoughtful and detailed review. Don’t just give them five stars, write about why you go there, what keeps you going back, and what about them makes them special from everyone else. A lot of people rely on reviews to make a decision about if they are going to patronize a shop and your review could be a tipping point that drives more traffic to their website and/or physical shop. Photos are a great way to showcase your pride in your purchase as well as allowing other potential buyers to see what they are getting.
Refer your friends to share the love of your favorite places. Your friends probably trust your taste and have similar taste to yours, go ahead and let them know about the gem you found and how much you love it. Word of mouth is still one of the best reasons’ businesses move forward and stay in the black so make sure you are telling anyone you think could be interested in their products or services.
Do you have family coming to visit? Take them to your favorite shop, the business owner will be honored you wanted your family to see them and your family will love to see the things that you appreciate about your community.
Sign Up for Newsletters
Sign up for their newsletters so you can stay abreast of all their discount times, sales, and coupons. They may start a point system or an incentive of some kind that you don’t want to miss out on. Make sure to share any emails with friends you think would like to also take advantage and click the links they supply in the emails to increase their web traffic.
Sometimes owners will send newsletters that have nothing to do with the business and just want to share their thoughts and family news. This is a very special thing that not every small business does so interact with them and make sure to remind them how much their business means to you and that you care about their welfare.
Tell them directly, in-person or with a card, why you like and appreciate their business. It really is meaningful, and it is more appreciated than you know. Knowing exactly what it is that their customers love about them is what they will continue to enhance. They will work even harder to make sure that service and/or product is available and continued at the same quality to make sure their base customers are happy.
Here are some great reasons to continue to shop small when you can:
- 36% more money stays local when it is spent at a small business
- 44% of U.S. economic activity comes from small businesses
- 64% of private-sector jobs are created by small businesses
Speaking of small businesses, have you thought about starting one for you and your family? Solidarity has a ‘setting up your business’ coaching session in their Learning Center! It’s well worth your time to check it out so you can have the upper hand on getting your business off the ground.