Why you should support small businesses…
Small businesses struggle from time to time, let alone during the pandemic. Now more than ever is so important to be supporting small businesses, and shopping local. The recovery is often even harder than the actual recession. Small businesses are struggling, but large corporate companies aren’t, or not as bad at least.
Whilst big companies such as Amazon or eBay continue to thrive, or have at least minimal impact, small businesses like mine, hair salons, local restaurants, or business owners on Etsy who make hand crafted products have definitely taken a hit.
The effort and time put into our products and services that all of us small business owners have to put in is often overlooked. That’s why it’s so important to shop local, especially now. Small businesses often have to start selling their products or services at lower prices to begin with. This is to attract customers. Often the selling price is not worth the relentless hours and hard work that goes into running a business.
There are so many benefits to supporting small businesses, and not necessarily just business related. Let’s look into them…
The benefits of shopping local…
They tend to offer more bespoke and unique products/services
A small business has less customers or clients than big companies, especially if their niche is quite rare or unique. However, with a smaller market it allows the business owner to provide products and services that are much more tailored to the buyer. Especially businesses that do custom orders. You know what you’re receiving is unique to your needs!
In large corporate companies, everything is massed produced in factories since there is such a big market for everything they sell. Therefore they’re going to have millions upon millions of orders worldwide. This means their products aren’t exactly one of a kind, or tailored to the buyer.
It’s much more personal
With small businesses, the customer journey is much more personal. Let’s take an Etsy shop as an example again. The customer journey tends to involve communication directly between the buyer and the seller. Whereas if you’re just ordering off Amazon, you don’t actually talk to anyone do you? Communication between the buyer and seller helps create a rapport. This makes the buyer feel much more secure and confident in what they’re purchasing. It helps the seller create relationships with their audience, and gain a better understanding of their market.
So much love and care goes into each hand made product. From my experience too, small businesses will often include hand written notes within their parcels and maybe a small freebie to encourage repeat purchase. The personal journey adds so much value to the product since the buyer feels appreciated.
It creates more jobs and builds a community
One of the biggest things I pride myself in with my small business is the community that’s been created. This is another huge benefit of supporting small business; you become part of a community. Everyone wants to be part of something, and a community is created through a shared love of the businesses niche/expertise.
As well as this, small businesses tend to create so many new employment opportunities, especially for people who may be seen as ‘unemployable’ by so many of the large companies out there. Small businesses tend to embrace differences and individuality so much more, which then again helps strengthen the community.
It’s better for the environment
Like I said, the benefits aren’t just business related. Small businesses tend to be so much better for the environment. Why? Because smaller businesses like to buy from more locally sourced suppliers. This in turn massively reduces their carbon footprint since so many large businesses source from a ton of different places.
Also, small businesses are much more likely to be able to avoid things like plastic packaging. We all know plastic can be harmful to the environment. Since they have fewer customers and things don’t necessarily need to be mass produced, they’re able to source more environmentally friendly packaging to use for their products.
It makes the local economy stronger
According to love-cambridge.com, local businesses accounted for 99.3% of the UK’s private sector businesses, meaning they’re a huge part of the economy. If you’re spending money on a large company, where does that money actually go? We don’t know. But shopping local means more money goes back into the community. Ultimately this will build up the local economy and keep it going!
Supporting small businesses…
Of course, the main way you can support a small business is by simply buying their products or services. If you’re shopping local, make sure what your purchasing is going to be of value to you. Like I said, so much work goes into running a business. We try to create products and services that are perfect for our clients/buyers. So of course it’s better if we know our hard work is really helping someone and they’re getting the most out of it!
Otherwise, if you still want to support small businesses but can’t buy anything, spread the word! Visibility is so important within a business! Sharing with your friends or family or on social media will go a long way and really help out the business owner.
There’s so many reasons why you should support small businesses, but a huge one is simply the fact it makes you feel good! Knowing you’re supporting someone who may be struggling or feel their hard work isn’t worth it is so rewarding. It feels great for you, and of course for the business owner!