The Benefits of Shopping Small Businesses

No matter what side of the proverbial aisle you are on, I am sure you are glad the presidential election is over. No more ads, no more debates, and a lot less political posts on Facebook. Well, at least for a little while. One thing you heard political candidates agree on during the election season was the importance of small businesses to our communities and the need to make sure that government helps small businesses be successful (even though they disagreed on how).  While the average consumer cannot do much to affect policy, they can make a difference with their dollars. But shopping at small businesses does more than just help to support small business. It also helps you in a number of ways you might not have even considered:

  • Small businesses can be very unique. Let’s face it, you are going to find a lot of unique items at a small shop that might not be available in your local big box stores. I used to shop at a gift shop that had the neatest items that everyone always loved getting in their gift baskets.  That shop is gone now and I often find myself wishing I could stop in again.
  • Locally-owned and independent restaurants and shops reflect the character of your area. My favorite local pizzeria decorates its walls with historic pictures of my hometown and displays the local high schools’ sports jerseys. I feel at home there.
  • Customer service at a personal level is common. I have had some very friendly cashiers at big box stores, but generally everyone is in a hurry and I don’t always see the same person again for a while. My local taco shop always has the same people up front and they recognize me when I come in. Plus, they need my business and will work hard to keep it.  I have had a few terrible experiences with huge chains and I never got any feeling of resolution because I knew that it really did not matter to them if they lost me as a customer.
  • Small businesses are often…well, small. I love going into a store that is not a huge cavern with no clocks or windows. I don’t want to travel up and down countless aisles and 150,000 square feet.
  • Shopping small feels good!  While all consumer dollars help the economy, when I spend money in a small business I feel like I am helping out local people who really need my patronage. I feel like I am doing something to support my community.
  • Small businesses are often specialty stores. For a while I was really into making beaded jewelry and I had no idea what I was doing and what tools were available to me.  I went to a chain craft store and was overwhelmed by selection and underwhelmed by the availability of anyone who knew what to do with the items they were selling. Then I found a local bead shop and the owners were more than willing to answer my questions and show me what to do. They were experts and that made every bit of difference.

Shopping small is a fabulous idea.  I hope you will join me in my Small Business Saturday challenge on November 24, 2012. After the madness of Black Friday, relax and hit the local small businesses. Without these gems, we would be condemned to a life of cookie cutter shopping experiences and boring repetition , and who wants that?

Disclosure: I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour for Mom Central Consulting on behalf of American Express. I received a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.

About Janice

I am so glad you stopped by. Kick your shoes off and hang with me a while. I am an Arizona native, wife to a hard-working hubby, mom of two, and daughter of the King. I love sharing recipes, crafts, and family activities that any mom can do. Life is complicated enough, right? When I am not up to my ears in laundry, dishes, and creating for Celebrating Family, you will also find me at East Valley Mom Guide. Come follow me on Google +, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter.

Comments

  1. http://Debra%20Givens-Wagner says

    You are so right, there are many treasures hidden in the corners of small store!

  2. Shopping at small stores has it’s own advantages.

  3. http://Kristina%20Valcarce says

    My husband is a small business owner and we both really appreciate this article!

  4. http://Claudia says

    I love shopping at local business, and wished more people would also shop at their local stores, Thank you for this great post.

  5. http://Lindsay%20Lee says

    Small Businesses are the best! They are the only place you can get awesome customer service anymore. I’m super excited that I won an American Express Gift card to use on Small Business saturday! I can’t wait to go shopping!!!

  6. http://Rebecca%20Sinclair says

    Such a great idea to dedicate a day to small businesses. I need to shop in them more.

  7. http://Anne says

    So right and please don’t haggle or ask for too high a discount with owners/sellers of small businesses. They usually sell at a low profit margin. Let’s give these people our support.

  8. http://casance says

    love your article on the small business I like how you mentioned shopping small feels good. It really does to me, as a photographer in purchasing props, well I can only speck for me. I tend to shop small and I am normal at theirft stores, flea markets, yard sales or even salvation armies

  9. http://Leilani%20Caoagdan says

    I think small business’ are great places to find special and unique things or specialty items. I believe that everyone should support the small business.

  10. http://Clifford%20M. says

    Very nice article. Hope to have a small business soon. It’s worth to try because I’ve known few people who were successful in this endeavor.

  11. http://Jennifer%20Mae%20Hiles says

    I have several friends that own small businesses in our community so I love helping them out every chance I get.

  12. http://Debra%20Wagner says

    I cant wait to go shopping at local small shops

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Trackbacks

  1. […] be in dire need of unique merchandise and  personalized customer service. Remember all those benefits of shopping at small businesses that I told you about? I hope they encouraged you to go out and shop your local small businesses […]

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