Why You Should Support Local Businesses

Walking into a shop or restaurant and being greeted by a familiar face can be a truly welcoming feeling. These types of experiences are only to be found in local retail. Local business owners offer their wares to support the local economy and provide needed services to their neighbors. Cultivating these relationships offers advantages for both the consumer and the business owner. There are many reasons you should support local businesses.

1. Focus on Local Fashion

Primarily, when owners of local shops purchase stock for their stores, they are considering the desires and needs of their local constituents. For clothing and home décor stores, they understand the local fashions and trends in these markets. When buyers for big box stores purchase stock, they are considering national trends and buy accordingly. Often in local shops, the buyer is purchasing an item or style with a particular person, not a regional trend, in mind. This creates a special opportunity for the shopper to find more unique, and sometimes, locally produced items. In the big box stores, shoppers are faced with an array of more generic, mass-produced items. For instance, local stores can purchase more types of items in smaller quantities while chain stores stock with larger quantities of fewer styles.

2. No More Cookie-Cutter Food

In local restaurants, consumers are privy to more specialized experiences, as well. Restaurant owners and their staff take the time to get to know their customers and offer dishes that reflect local flavors in a relaxed environment. It is not uncommon for staff to greet frequent guests by name and tailor their dining experience based on their personal tastes. Chain restaurants must focus on the tastes and preferences of much larger audiences. Usually, this results in ‘cookie cutter’ food that tastes the same in Des Moines as it does in Willow Park.

3. Highest Level of Customer Service

Local business owners actively work to provide the highest level of service to every guest that visits their shop or restaurant. When customers return often, they do so with the assurance that the dollars they spend are reinvested in the community where they live. Plus, you usually have shorter lines!

4. Stronger Local Economy

When you shop local, you are making a personal investment in your community. Local businesses give back to the community in many ways.  Money is kept in the community because locally-owned businesses typically purchase from other local businesses and help them grow. Local businesses also hire locally. In fact, small local businesses are the largest employers nationally.

Plus, there’s a tax benefit. Not only do you generate more tax revenue per dollar, but also taxes paid by small, local businesses are used to support schools, parks, roads, and other local programs.

So, the next time you are thinking about going shopping, heading out for a drink or heading to a restaurant, go local! Instead of spending time driving to the city, do what you can locally. It’s a benefit for both you and the local owner.

Visit The Shops at Willow Park to support the local community.

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