Today is Small Business Saturday. Started in 2010 by American Express (which feels a bit weird, but cool, whatever, it’s a good idea), Small Business Saturday promotes holiday shopping at local businesses on the Saturday following Thanksgiving. But shouldn’t every day be Small Business Saturday?
If you have to buy, you should buy locally and support independent businesses. Why? Well, the American Independent Business Alliance has put together a great list of the Top Reasons to Buy Local, Eat Local, Go Local:
- Build Community: The casual encounters you enjoy at neighborhood-scale businesses and the public spaces around them build relationships and community cohesiveness. They’re the ultimate social networking sites!
- Strengthen Your Local Economy: Each dollar you spend at independent businesses returns 3 times more money to your local economy than one spent at a chain (hundreds of times more than buying from an online mega-retailer) — a benefit we all can bank on.
- Shape Community Character: Independent businesses help give your community its distinct personality.
- Create a Healthier Environment: Independent, community-serving businesses are people-sized. They typically consume less land, carry more locally-made products, locate closer to residents and create less traffic and air pollution.
- Lower Taxes: More efficient land use and more central locations mean local businesses put less demand on our roads, sewers, and safety services. They also generate more tax revenue per sales dollar. The bottom line: a greater percentage of local independent businesses keeps your taxes lower.
- Enhance Choices: A wide variety of independent businesses, each serving their customers’ tastes, creates greater overall choice for all.
- Create Jobs and Opportunities: Not only do independent businesses employ more people directly per dollar of revenue, they also are the customers of local printers, accountants, wholesalers, farms, attorneys, etc., expanding opportunities for local entrepreneurs.
- Give Back to Your Community: Small businesses donate more than twice as much per sales dollar to local non-profits, events, and teams compared to big businesses.
- Increase Wealth of Residents: The multiplier effect created by spending locally generates lasting impact on the prosperity of local organizations and residents.
- Enhance Local Democracy: Local ownership of business means residents with roots in the community are involved in key development decisions that shape our lives and local environment.
- Enhance Health of Residents: Research shows a strong correlation between the percentage of small locally-owned firms and various indicators of personal and community health and vitality.
For sources and more information, please visit http://www.amiba.net/resources/localhero