It's been quite a popular topic lately, 'support and buy locally', 'stop using corporations', 'give your local vendors your business'! Before Walmart, Target or even Amazon, what did we do? We bought from our local farmers markets, from our neighbors who could do trades others couldn't like make clothes, jewelry, landscaped, or went to our local general stores owned by someone in our community. Unfortunately, we started seeing a lot of that fade and started shopping at bigger chains where we could find items less expensive and more convenient. That's not a bad thing at all but we tend forget the benefits and importance of shopping locally. There's the environmental benefits, local economic benefits, and benefits for the community, including job retention and non profit support!
Large chain grocery stores, clothing stores, Amazon all use some sort of transportation to get the products in stock for your enjoyment. It's great when our product is in stock but we don't think what it took and what it did to our environment to get that product on the shelf. Planes, trains, 18 wheelers all add to the pollution! Buying locally does help reduce that because items are already available within your community and majority made in the backyard of the shop. That means less travel for everyone to get a product on the shelf.
Local businesses provide economic benefits to communities by providing jobs that usually have a higher retention rate. A higher job retention means employees are happy with their employers which gives a better customer experience. Who wouldn't want that?! Another benefit to shopping locally is knowing your money does go back into the community. Typically a local business has a heart for the community and neighborhood they're established in leading them to be the best donors for local non profit organizations that they believe to help continue making their neighborhood strong. If you pass a cute looking shop, would you have no temptation to walk in? Let's not forget the pride that local business owners have of their shops by providing aesthetics for the neighborhood with uniqueness to their shops. It's hard to not want to walk in! The more unique the shop, the more unique the product as well.
The next time you pass a shop that is locally owned, just walk in, even if you don't buy anything, it will show so much respect for the owners to know that anyone had the slightest interest in what they do and bring to the neighborhood! That alone is rewarding for our local vendors, general stores, floral shops and more!