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Why shop local?

March 9, 2009

Ten good reasons to shop at locally-owned businesses:

1. Purchasing locally helps grow other local businesses: Spending at local establishments rather than at chain stores or online businesses helps our economy. More money will remain in the community because locally owned businesses purchase from other businesses, service providers, family farms and so on.
2. Most new jobs are provided by local businesses: Small local businesses are the largest employer nationally, and in Central Wisconsin provide the most new jobs to residents.
3. Our one-of-a-kind businesses are an integral part of our distinctive character: It’s the unique character of the region that brought us here and will keep us here.  Richard Moe, president of the National Historic Preservation Trust, says, “When people go on vacation they generally seek out destinations that offer them the sense of being someplace, not just anyplace.”
4. Local business owners invest in community: Local businesses are owned by people who live in this community, are less likely to leave, and are more invested in the community’s future.
5. Better customer service: Local businesses often hire people with more specific product expertise for an overall better customer service experience.
6. Competition and diversity leads to more choices: A marketplace of small businesses is the best way to promote innovation and lower prices over the long-term.  Small businesses, each selecting products based on their own interests and the wants and needs of their local customers, guarantees a much broader range of quality product choices.
7. Reduced environmental impact: Locally-owned businesses can make more local purchases requiring less transportation and generally set up shop in town or city centers as opposed to developing on the fringe. This generally means contributing less to urban sprawl, congestion, habitat loss and pollution.
8. Public benefits far outweigh public costs: Local businesses in town centers require comparatively little infrastructure investment and make more efficient use of public services as compared to nationally owned stores entering the community.
9. Encourages investment in our community: Research shows that in an increasingly homogenized world, entrepreneurs and skilled workers are more likely to invest and settle in communities which preserve and encourage their one-of-a-kind businesses and distinctive character.
10. Non-profits receive greater support: Non-profit organizations receive an average 350% greater support from local business owners than they do from non-locally owned businesses.

Adapted from BALLE

3 Comments leave one →
  1. JBR permalink
    March 10, 2009 1:46 pm

    FYI, this list was published by the Boulder Independent Business Alliance and American Independent Business Alliance long before dozens of other groups copied and adapted it. They should be credited.

  2. March 10, 2009 3:41 pm

    Thanks for the clarification, Jim. I found the list it on the BALLE site and that’s why I gave them credit at the end of the post.

  3. March 10, 2009 3:43 pm

    I should have mentioned that BALLE (Business Alliance for Local Living Economies) is an organization that we recently joined. More information on BALLE can be found at

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