Consumers are eager to buy products made in America for both emotional and practical reasons. For some people, the primary motivation can be patriotism and the desire to create more jobs here in the U.S. Other folks are also concerned about lowing the carbon footprint and reducing pollution. They believe it makes sense to buy products manufactured in this country.
- 80 percent of consumers prefer products with the “Made in USA” tag
- 60 percent of Americans are willing to pay 10 percent more for U.S. products
- 60 percent of Americans associate “Made in the USA” with high quality
Additionally, buying American made products has a ripple effect that benefits the entire economy. It supports the workers who make the goods, the businesses who sell or use them, and the manufacturers who produce the products. The Economic Policy Institute estimates each manufacturing job in the U.S. supports 14 different jobs in other segments of the economy.
The Hiring Power of Small Businesses
Small businesses employ 60 million people. They have a tremendous impact on the health and well being of the economy. From 2000 to 2017, small businesses created 66 percent of the net new jobs in the U.S. This is a total of 8.4 million jobs.
- In 2018 there were 30.2 million small businesses
- 99.9 percent of the companies in the U.S. are small businesses
Small Manufacturers Drive Innovation
Manufacturers in the U.S. employ 8.5 percent of the workforce. The desire to create and develop new and innovative products results in high paying manufacturing jobs for people with or without college degrees. The commitment to research and the development of advanced technologies enables small manufacturers to remain relevant and compete globally.
According to the National Association of Manufacturers (NAN), the return on investment for manufacturing is significant. “Manufacturing adds $1.89 for every dollar spent in the sector. The multiplier effect is $3.60 for every $1.00 of value-added output.
- U.S. manufacturers conduct 75 percent of private-sector research and development
- There are 251,774 manufacturers in this country, and only 3,813 are large operations
Made in America Movement Takes Off
A few years ago, it wasn’t easy for consumers to locate and identify products made in the U.S. That changed when businesses, manufacturers, and workers joined together to advocate on behalf of the products they sell and produce. Now, there are several non-partisan organizations committed to the cause. One of the leading organizations is the Made in America Movement (MAM). It represents 20,000 American sourced companies and has 440,000 consumer members. In 2019, MAM grew 200 percent after a merger with Made in America Co.
“This merger will make it easier for consumers to find products Made in the USA. Almost every major country has a country of origin labeling program with guidelines for one reason – consumers see value in knowing where their products are made. Years ago, consumers looked for the Made in USA label primarily as a sign of quality and as part of buy local campaigns to support the domestic economy. Today, consumers increasingly support companies making their products in the United States because of American consumer protection laws, federal safety standards, and to avoid regions that do not have the same worker safety, child protection, and environmental protections we have in the U.S. ” said Kurt Uhlir, Chairman of The Made in America Movement.
Promoting Made in America
Hardware stores have been around since the founding of our nation. Customers like shopping in local establishments because they like doing business with people they know and trust. They expect to find quality products and get helpful advice about their projects. Shoppers want the neighborhood hardware store to offer an exciting variety of products—some not typically found in big boxes. Building a niche business dedicated to American made products is an opportunity to provide exceptional service to customers who support this popular movement.