CULLMAN – It is a great time to turn a profit for businesses during the holidays. Black Friday is very lucrative for most businesses, especially big box stores like Target and Walmart. This year, remember the little guy and shop local this Saturday to show your support for the local residents who make their living from their small businesses.
There are many more reasons to shop small and local than you might think. For example, when you shop and support local small business, you invite more jobs, opportunity, culture and more. A town with thriving small businesses is an all around healthier town. Director of Small Business and Workforce Solutions at the Cullman Area Chamber of Commerce, Derek Lane, noted these benefits as well.
“Key studies suggest that shopping with locally-owned retailers is important to our communities. It’s good for the local economy, it supports jobs, and increases support for local charities. And it just feels good to know that you’re contributing to the community’s sense of well-being and quality of life.”
While it is true that large companies pay local taxes that help the community, when you shop small, even more money stays right here in Cullman. Small businesses contribute more to local charities and community needs than the larger chain stores. An independent research team in London compared what happened when people bought their vegetables at a local farmer’s market rather than a chain grocery store. Author and researcher with the team New Economics Foundation, David Boyle, described the results that showed that double the money spent locally stayed in the community.
“That means those purchases are twice as efficient in terms of keeping the local economy alive," Boyle said. “Money is like blood. It needs to keep moving around to keep the economy going. When money is spent elsewhere, at big supermarkets, non-locally owned utilities and other services such as on-line retailers, it flows out like a wound.”
Cullman has a beautiful downtown and small business atmosphere. People want to open their doors here, and we need to ensure it stays that way. We do that by making purchases on Main Street whenever we can. The big chains have their perks too, but this Saturday is all about the ma and pop stores, the little man. So when you go to check off items on your Christmas list this season, remember to shop small, and shop local this Saturday, and this holiday season.