Editorial - A gift-buying tip: shop localLike it or not, the Christmas shopping season is about to begin – before your Thanksgiving meal even has time to settle. Some of the bigger stores are planning to start offering their blowout “Black Friday” deals on Thanksgiving evening.
Like it or not, the Christmas shopping season is about to begin – before your Thanksgiving meal even has time to settle.
Some of the bigger stores are planning to start offering their blowout “Black Friday” deals on Thanksgiving evening.
The holidays, unfortunately, are turning into manic shopping sprees. You can’t really blame the stores for opening so early. They’re just giving customers what they want. Instead of spending quality time with family and friends or focusing on their blessings and the message of the Christmas season, too many people are expending all their energy on buying the latest toy, flat screen or gizmo.
If you are going to buy gifts this holiday season, don’t forget to shop local. Local retailers could certainly use your support over the holidays. Nationwide, small businesses make between 30 to 50 percent of their annual gross during the holiday season.
Why should you shop locally? According to the publication, Plus Business, people say they shop online for convenience and at national chains for price. Nonetheless, people want value for their dollar and most agree that is exactly what they get when they shop at local businesses, the publication noted. In many cases, local service is far and above what national chains offer and prices are competitive, noted Plus Business. It offered the following 10 reasons for shopping local:
• Shopping locally promotes foot traffic, which is especially important during the holiday season.
• It creates a bigger impact. One study showed that communities keep $68 for every $100 spent locally, while they keep $43 when $100 is spent at a chain store.
• Shopping locally creates and preserves jobs. Local businesses hire local people.
• It provides the best value. When you look at what you get for your dollar, plus durability, it pays to shop locally.
• It creates less pollution. Local businesses generally use less land and resources, and less travel out of the area reduces air pollution.
• It enables less taxes. Strong local businesses increase the local tax base, thereby decreasing the need to further tax residents while increasing the revenue for local police, fire and infrastructure.
• It builds a sense of community. In an ever-increasingly fast-paced world, the desire to shop in places where everyone knows your name is stronger than ever.
• It establishes one-of-a-kind character. Every city wants to stand out with its own personality. Local business helps communities shape their perception to the outside world.
• It stimulates area vitality. Nothing succeeds like success.
• Local business owners shop locally themselves. Businesses need everything from supplies to workday lunches, and local attorneys, accountants, restaurants, office supplies and more supply their need. They also tend to carry locally-produced goods, which further spurs small manufacturing and local artisan work that national chains will not take on.
This holiday season, relax a little. Focus on the things that are really important – friends, family, faith. And if you do venture out to buy a gift or two, remember your local merchants.