We recently came across a great article by the Local Buyers Club, featuring the top 10 benefits of supporting independent business and we thought it was information worth sharing. As a small business ourselves with lots of independent collaborators and partners, we know the benefits of shopping independent first-hand. We're unbelievably lucky and grateful for the support we've received over the last few months, and we hope the same kindness and generosity can be extended to our independent friends and neighbours. There’s many more than 10 reasons, but to summarise, here are a few of the most convincing reasons…
The Local Buyer’s Club have estimated that for every £1 spent with a small or medium-sized business, an estimated 63p stays in the economy compared to the 40p that would stay in local circulation from a larger business. Let's keep it local!
Throughout the outbreak of Covid-19, many smaller businesses have had to be very reactive to the needs of their customers. From local delivery, to specially designed care packages for loved ones, experiences are often much more tailored and thoughtful when you choose local and independent.
DOING THE RIGHT THING
Often, independent businesses are more connected to the wellbeing of their staff. They can often pay their staff better, pay their taxes fairly and generally keep a closer relationship with their teams, often merging into a real family-feel organisation.
According to the Federation of Small Business, small and medium sized businesses employ around 60% of the UK’s private sector workforce. Supporting local and independent allows these businesses to blossom and ultimately expand, absorbing more local talent into the fold securing local jobs for local people. Especially in the wake of Coronavirus, they’re having to adapt fast to secure livelihoods, now is the time to support them.
BUILD YOUR COMMUNITY
There’s a sad sense of nostalgia when we admit that most of us don’t know our neighbours, and we’re probably not on first name terms with the supermarket grocer. But popping to the local butcher, florist, restaurant or bakery really does build a community. Make friends the old fashioned way, pop in and say hello, talk about the weather if you have to, but within small communities, we’re all connected. We just need to enforce and nurture the connections.
It’s often even better for the environment. Local businesses by nature tend to make more local purchases, supporting local producers wherever they can. This naturally requires less transportation thus less CO2 emissions. Small and immediate levels of dispatch have a much lower carbon footprint compared to sprawling, large online retailers who resort to third party distribution or haulage.
HOME SWEET HOME
We all want to feel proud of our hometown. We all want to wander along a beautiful high street, a tapestry of colour and creativity. Not only this, but the thriving bustle of a charming, independent high street can also boost property value locally too.
Small business owners really care about each individual customer. Often investing in designated members of the team to talk to their customers and resolve any issues personally. No automated phone messages or stock responses here!
Independent retailers often stock locally made items, perhaps even from artisan makers. You simply won’t get this variety and uniqueness from chain stores. Independents can afford to be selective and idealistic when choosing their partners and collaborators, you’ll probably discover some really amazing new brands that you#ve never even heard of. There’s a whole new world out there…
MAKE A DIFFERENCE
There’s the old adage that we should be the change we want to see in the world. That change can start really small, like popping into a high street independent or supporting a local brand. A small change for you, by adjusting your purchasing habits, can make the world of difference to your local community, particularly when many small businesses are navigating a cultural climate that none of us have ever experienced before.
You’ve got the opportunity to make a big difference to a small business. If not now, then when?
To read the original article, click here.
Featured image taken and owned by Babyccino, original feature here.