Small businesses are the backbone of their communities. They drive growth and innovation, provide employment and create entrepreneurship opportunities, and ultimately, they’re what makes our towns feel unique and special.
Small businesses have a connection with their communities that major retailers don’t, if you support local businesses, you’re making a direct investment in the economy of your community. In fact, for every $100 that you spend locally, nearly $70 of it stays in the local economy, versus the $40 that stays local when you shop at a national retailer.
While supporting small businesses is always important, it’s especially critical during times where they’re under financial strain. Going out of your way to support your local businesses can help them stay afloat and continue providing invaluable services to the community.
Obviously, the next time you need to buy something or want to let someone else cook your dinner, it’s a good idea to take your business to local stores and restaurants. However, there are plenty of things you can do beyond that to show your support. Here are four ways to support your local small businesses.
Buy Gift Cards
Whether you’re purchasing them for later use or to give as gifts, purchasing gift cards is a fantastic way to support your favorite local small business. In many ways, buying a gift card from a business is like giving them a 0% mini loan. During a time of crisis, this is a much-appreciated lifeline that can help businesses stay afloat.
Spread the Word Through Social Media
Know of a cool promotion or idea from a local business? Consider sharing it on your social media page. Generally speaking, small businesses don’t have the resources for huge marketing efforts, meaning that it can be difficult to get the word out about special promotions or services like curbside pickup. Using social media to share their sales or special products is a simple way to help them reach new customers.
Shop Local – Online
It’s not always feasible to visit your local small business in person. Fortunately, many small businesses let their customers shop at least some of their inventory online. Do them – and yourself – a favor by snatching that one-of-a-kind boutique bag or piece of art from local artisans online, or visit your favorite indie bookstore’s website to find your next great read.
Leave a Review
Word-of-mouth advertising is one of the most effective ways for businesses to attract new customers, especially when customers are being extra-careful with how they spend their money. Taking some time to leave positive reviews for your favorite restaurants, retailers and service providers can help them bring in more business, or at the very least, make them smile.
There are many ways to support local businesses. Supporting your local small businesses in any way you can goes a long way in creating a community that fosters innovation and entrepreneurship. Even if your own finances are a little tight, there are meaningful ways that you can help your local businesses.