“Shop Local” is a cause Home Improvement Retailers can heartily support for a variety of economic and customer-centric reasons. In general, customers prefer to purchase products and services from someone they know rather than from a stranger who works in a big box. You can benefit economically from the trend to shop in the community during the holidays by creating promotions and displaying signage that encourages customers to buy from your store this season and throughout the year. On average, launching a “shop local” campaign for an individual business can result in a 47% increase in new customers and 55% increase in customer loyalty.
Encouraging people to invest their dollars with a business in the community is also one of the best ways to build relationships with your customers and to support something both you and they care about. And, if the cause also happens to grow your business, that’s even better. Just as important, shopping locally has a positive economic impact on the local economy. Statistics indicate for every $100 spent at a locally owned business, $73 remains in the neighborhood. In comparison, when $100 is spent at a non-locally owned business, only $43 remains in the local economy.
- Sales taxes fund essential services such as police and fire protection, street repairs and trash collection.
- Local ownership means that important decisions are made by people who live in the community and feel the impact of those decisions
- Business owners often sell local products, which helps preserve the community’s distinction and creates more jobs locally, as well.
- Support good work in our community—Studies show that nonprofits receive 250 percent more support from small businesses than large ones
Customers prefer shopping at small, local retailers
In a survey commissioned by UPS and conducted by ComScore*, 93% of the 5.000 consumers surveyed say they prefer shopping at local businesses and small retailers. Here’s why:
- 61 percent They offer unique products
- 49 percent I couldn’t find what I needed from traditional sources
- 40 percent I want to support the community or small businesses 29% I like to try new retailers
- 26 percent They feature a broader assortment
- 24 percent They provide innovative shopping experience
*UPS Pulse of the Shopper Survey
Getting the Word Out
Yes, your customers already know your business is in the neighborhood. But, it’s important to engage them on a regular basis and invite them to find out more about your community activities. You’ll also have an opportunity to promote your message “Shop Local, Shop Here.”
- Display “Shop Local, Shop Here” signs in your window and in the store
- Post a story about the history of your business and community events you support on social media and your website
- Join the local Chamber of Commerce to meet other business owners
- Host or promote local events that benefit the community
- Partner with other businesses or organizations
- When you plan to hire new staff, post job openings on social media
There is no downside to promoting “Shop Local” since it can only help grow your business and bring in more customers. So, don’t wait to create a plan, get started today.