We are just about to hit prime time for the retail season and as we do, we urge you to remember our local businesses.
There is almost no downside to spending money locally. Study after study after study backs up the contention that a dollar spent locally remains in the local economy, promoting the health of that economy through something called the multiplier effect.
Much of the money small businesses take in is frequently spent in their local community, either through the wages paid to employees, who then turn around and spend that money as consumers, or through direct business-to-business transactions.
Sure, it may be possible to find a better, cheaper deal somewhere else. For all of their charms and obvious advantages, small businesses simply cannot compete dollar for dollar with larger retail outlets.
What they can do is stand behind their products and provide a level of service that their larger competitor simply cannot. Buy something from Louis Doe’s that doesn’t make you happy, take it back. Mark Doe is there almost every day and he wants you to be happy with his store.
On any given day you could walk into one of our local Renys and you might actually be greeted and served by an actual, honest-to-god Reny. We would like to know the last time one of Sam Walton’s kids set foot inside a Wal-Mart when there wasn’t a photo-op.
This is not to say that local business is the end-all be-all. There are some products you simply can’t buy locally and the selection of products can be limited.
That aside, if you are driving any distance just to take advantage of a lower sales price, whatever savings you might have enjoyed was probably spent on gas and food and that money is now gone, permanently gone.
The true cost of the product is not really the one on the price tag.