Shop, Eat & Enjoy Local!

It’s a New School Year, a Fresh Start for Local Businesses after Summer Vacation & the Gateway into the Holiday Season! With a “New Year” comes a great opportunity to be part of the Winning-est Consumer Model


When you shop at independent or local-to-you businesses, more money is kept within your community because local businesses often use or buy from local service providers, farms, and companies. Buying locally helps grow other businesses as well as your region’s tax base. Shopping in a local business district means less infrastructure, less maintenance, and more money available to beautify your community. Also, spending locally instead of online ensures that your sales taxes are reinvested where they belong— in your community!

“Shop Local!” is a cry heard from Green-Minded/Local Ambassadors & Business Owners during all seasons, and as holiday gifting and school shopping approaches, the exclamations seem to get louder.

But what does “shop local” mean, exactly and what benefits are there for you when there may be cheaper options?

Shop Small | Think INDEPENDENT businesses here. Boutique or consignment clothing stores, toy stores, gift shops, hardware stores, salons/spas, restaurants, and sports equipment stores are just a few examples of owner-run businesses where you can find great gifts.  And you may be surprised how competitively priced a “well made or well produced” product is!

Maybe you don’t live in a metro area with many options, in which case, local craft fairs and Etsy are perfect places to look for something special by local artisans!  Ask your local stores if they have any incentives or network programs with other local stores to promote local shopping.  It could be a Chamber of Commerce punch card or local programs like Cardlis Rewards!

Did You Know? Independent businesses provide over 90% of the jobs in your community & as a result offer 300% higher economic returns to your community!

Eat Locally | Don’t underestimate the amount of dollars spent on food, beverages, and restaurant visits during the fall. Those dollars can be viewed as an investment in your community! Investigate local butchers, shop your farmer’s market, check for LOCAL signs in larger grocery stores, support small wine and liquor stores, and frequent independent restaurants. An impressive 65.4% returns to your community when you eat at a local restaurant versus a chain.

Spend Locally | Where do your dollars go when you spend them? According to the North American Independent Business Alliance (AIBA), there is something called the “Multiplier Effect” that doesn’t get mentioned enough in the Shop Local movement. “The multiplier effect is the boost to your local economy that results from locally-owned independent businesses, owners, and employees spending business revenue within the region.” In a number of studies illustrated on AIBA’s site, a proven 48% return to the community occurs when you spend locally, versus a 13.6% return when shopping chain retail.

You’ll also enjoy a higher quality product in most cases when supporting your local small businesses. Products from overseas are often cheap for a reason; they skimp on quality and often humane working conditions.

Enjoy Locally | Think like a tourist. If you were vacationing in your town, what would you seek out? Check with your Chamber of Commerce for back to school or holiday activities, consult school and community calendars, and read up on events hosted by local clubs, the library, or civic organizations. Locally owned businesses pick the items and products they sell based on what they know you like and want.  Local businesses carry a wider array of unique products because they buy for their own individual markets.

Keeping these basics in mind during the holidays will guarantee you’re doing your part to support your community, and that you’ll see the benefits of that support in the coming year!


Cardlis Rewards is a “Shop Local” program created For Locals, By Locals!  Earn Points for Free Merchandise & Discounts.  Cardlis also rewards you with every local purchase made by giving BONUS Community Cash that is used on local Gift Cards!


Join a Shop Local Network Today!





Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *