When you shop at a mega-retailer chain store or an online retailer (yes, like Amazon), most of your dollars leave the local economy. You may save a little, but the loss to our hometowns result in local unemployment, higher taxes, and reduced services. By supporting locally-owned, independent businesses, communities keep their dollars working for them as they enrich the local economy, increase the diversity of available products, provide better service and improve the quality of life for all of us.
Trading independent retailers for big-box chains weakens the local economy. This is because local stores recycle a much larger share of their sales revenue back into the local economy, while chains siphon most of the dollars spent at their stores out of the community, funneling them back to corporate headquarters or to distant suppliers. The added economic benefit of local stores has been dubbed the “local premium”. Several studies have quantified it. From Andersonville IL, Austin TX, Boulder CO and San Francisco, economic impact studies show that locally owned stores generate greater benefits for the local economy than do national chains. The Andersonville Study, for instance, shows that for every $100 a consumer spends: Local businesses give back $68 to the local economy. Chain stores only give back $43.
The Local Premium impacts:
· Local payrolls, as locally owned businesses spend a larger share of their revenue on local labor because they carry out all management functions on-site, rather than at corporate headquarters.
· Procurement, as local retailers spend more than twice as much buying goods and services from other local businesses. They bank locally; hire local accountants, attorneys, designers, and other professionals; advertise in local media; and source inventory from local firms.
· Profits; because their owners live in the area, a larger portion of the local retailers’ profits stay within the local economy.
· Charitable giving, as local retailers donate more on average to local charities and community organizations than the chains do.
Adding dollars circulating in the local economy translates into a larger number and wider variety of available jobs. The implications of the local premium for how cities approach economic development are significant. Not only do big-box stores eliminate more retail jobs than they create, but they reduce local economic activity and job creation in other sectors. Conversely, expanding local businesses generates substantially greater economic benefits.
By supporting locally-owned, independent businesses, communities keep their dollars working for them as they enrich the local economy, increase the diversity of available products, provide better service and improve the quality of life for all of us. During this recession, now more than ever, if you understand this issue and care about your community you should PUT YOUR MONEY WHERE YOUR HOUSE IS!
The Pilgrim’s Way Community Bookstore & Secret Garden is pleased to offer a Benefit Program in recognition of your support of our local independence for 40 years! Our Benefit Program Membership options include valuable benefits tailored to your preferences. Pick up a Membership Application in the store or at www.PilgrimsWay.com on the About Us page in the drop down menu for a pdf download.
Check out these sites to learn more about Hometown Peninsula and its members as well as other communities across the nation that are united to maintain economically vibrant independent business communities: