Here at Nicol Estate Agents we are strong advocates of shopping with local independent businesses instead of the national chain stores, wherever possible. There are so many benefits for choosing a local independent business over a large, commercial one. Take a look at how shopping local this Christmas can help our area and wider community:
Local independent businesses are the backbone of our economy but did you know that shopping at a local business is better for the economy of your community? Research has shown that by spending £10 in a local shop means an additional £50 goes back into the local community because the business owners put that money back into the community by using the local amenities.
By investing in local business you will have a positive effect on the job opportunities in the area – helping generations to come. Small employers are the largest employer of jobs across the UK and local employers tend to pay higher wages than the commercial chains. By generating jobs in the area we are supporting a healthy community and helping it to thrive.
Many people believe that the best deals are found online. However, prices in local shops are often just as competitive – so make sure you check your local stores first as they can often match the deals found online. Some local businesses have online shops rather than premises so check the Facebook groups or ask for gift recommendations from local craftspeople.
Independent businesses are run by the people who own them, not boards or stockholders. The staff turnover is often lower and the people working there are invested in the business. Natural authenticity makes for a great shopping experience with a personal touch from the owner. Building relationships between the local owner and the local customer goes further than just a purchase.
Shopping with a local company over a chain store or online can have a positive impact on the environment. Your local business is likely to be a short walk or drive away rather than located at a retail park out of town or needing to be shipped from across the country – or even overseas.
If you’re looking for a unique, original gift then try a local independent store rather than a chain store with the same stock up and down the country. You can find hand made products that can’t be found anywhere else!
By supporting local businesses you’re helping to support entrepreneurs who once may not have had a chance of getting their company started. Through more people choosing the smaller, local option over bigger stores, you are allowing more entrepreneurs to get their foot in the door and creating a healthy economy as a result. Innovation often happens at local businesses too, helping industries to improve and progress.
Local businesses often support local charities that are relevant to the area. By shopping with them you can increase the donations – for example at Nicol Estate Agents we support several local causes and this benefits our immediate community.
If something goes wrong it is reassuring knowing that you can contact the local business to speak to someone face to face. Large commercial companies often have a call centre or customer service team but with a local business you can talk to the owner to sort out any issues.