Since 2010, the Saturday after Thanksgiving has been known as Small Business Saturday — the day when consumers are encouraged to shop locally and make purchases from the stores in their neighborhoods. Now, Small Business Saturday has catapulted into a mega-moneymaker for local business owners with consumers spending $23.3 billion in 2021

Here’s how shopping small makes a big impact.  

Creates Job Opportunities and Sustainability

There are nearly 32 million small businesses in the United States, and those account for almost two-thirds of new jobs created since 2000. As small businesses feel the pressure of the pandemic and tight labor market, hiring and retaining employees has become more of a challenge. Historically, when small businesses do well, it’s a signal that the economy is also doing well. Shopping local means creating job opportunities in your community, strengthening local businesses, and ultimately contributing to growth in the national economy. 

Puts Your Tax Dollars to Work 

Buying where you live keeps your tax dollars in your community. Supporting local businesses means that twice the amount of money stays in the community instead of going to out-of-state (or even out-of-country) companies. In addition, the sales tax on your purchases is reinvested in your area, meaning more opportunities to support improvement efforts that you care about.  

Elevates the Shopping Experience

When you shop small, you aren’t purchasing from a large corporation with no interest in you or your neighborhood; instead, you’re buying from a community member. Since small business owners have a sense of pride in serving their community, you’ll often have a more personalized, one-on-one shopping experience when you browse the shelves of a local store. Why buy from a massive corporation when you can support your neighbor? 

Keeps the Community Authentic

Creativity, diversity, and authenticity often flourish throughout small businesses. As many small businesses are family-owned, it’s important to note that supporting local organizations means contributing to family legacies within a community. About 30% of family businesses transition to the second generation, with the number dropping to 12% in the third generation. Supporting local businesses also means supporting local families.  

Helps Sustainability Efforts

Shopping small doesn’t just lead to financial sustainability for a business; it leads to sustainability improvements for the country as a whole. For example, small companies typically have fewer shipping needs, which reduces CO2 outputs. Many local businesses also pride themselves on collaborating with vendors and organizations in the community, so local companies work in tandem to reduce their environmental impact.

Start Shopping Small

Are you ready to get out there and shop small? Check out these apps for the best local spots in your area. Also, encourage your friends and family to get in on the action by hitting their neighborhoods for holiday gifts on Small Business Saturday – and every day. 

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