Why Shop Locally?

July 22, 2008 at 4:45 pm Leave a comment

The title of this blog entry might sound strange coming from a web company, but it’s very important and something that is often not explained well.

Small & Medium Businesses (SMBs), particularly small businesses aren’t just an important part of the economy, they ARE the economy!

When we think of our own personal favorite businesses, the ones we’d recommend to our friends and family, chances are most of them are local businesses.  I know my favorite restaurants are!

I’d like to share some interesting information we’ve come across regarding small businesses and their impact and importance on the local economy. (Local wherever you are)

tiba We attended a breakfast by the Tampa Independent Business Alliance this morning, and they shared some fascinating information with us.  (These statistics are about the same in other markets too.)

When you spend money with local independent businesses, those dollars you spend stay in the local economy about 3 times longer than if you had spent them with a national / big box company.  

Those dollars spent with the local business are then spent paying local people, service providers, suppliers, etc.  On average, of the dollars spent at so-called big box stores, about 80% of those dollars leave the local market immediately. 

According to the US Small Business Administration, 

Small businesses:

  •     Represent 99.7% of all employer firms
  •     Employ half of all private sector employees
  •     Pay 44% of all private payroll
  •     Generate 60 to 80% of all new jobs annually
  •     Create more than 50% of non-farm, private GDP
  •     Employ 39% of high tech workers
  •     Make up 97% of all identified exporters
  •     Total approximately 23 million in the US, with roughly
  •     75% of the firms having no employees

In Tampa for example, 87% of Tampa companies employ fewer than 20 people.

My point is, when you’re recommending a business to a friend, you’re most likely going to recommend a local business.  It’s important to remember those businesses that not only drive our local economies, but also play an important role in defining our individual cities and towns.

That’s all for now.

Remember to tell your friends about WOMbeat!

-Marc

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