Shopping locally is essential for the prosperity of your community and the world as a whole. It increases revenue, creates more jobs for citizens and fuels the growth of the local economy. By focusing your money on maintaining local revenue circulation, you can help support the economic and environmental prosperity of your local area, as well as act sustainably in the interests of the whole world.
Build and support your community
Shopping locally is more than simply supporting the shop you buy the product or service from. There is a wide array of businesses that are engaged by the local business you buy from, with they themselves using the services of the community around them to create the end result that you have purchased. For example, they may hire designers and tradespeople to build their premises and the fixtures, use the services of local accountants, insurance brokers, marketing companies and IT specialists, as well as source materials from farmers and manufacturers, to create an ecosystem that supports and perpetuates the local business community. When a large retailer moves in, they often have established suppliers from outside the area from which to source their materials. Their nation- or worldwide presence enables them to price aggressively to freeze out smaller operators and remove competition, to the detriment of the community.
The transportation systems employed in local businesses differ drastically from those found in large, international companies. Local businesses require less travel to and from the area of production to the place of sale, which results in a smaller carbon footprint and greatly reduced energy usage. Using local produce and services reduces the need to import goods over great distances, with limits fuel consumption and reduces the business’s carbon footprint.
Build a community with character
Local character is driven by the businesses and the support they receive from the community. No one ever says that the local Starbucks is their favourite café, instead it is the locally owned and operated one, where they remember your name and spell it right on the cup. Their food tastes fresh and is made on-site using ingredients from the other local businesses. This is an idealised view of the process, however it is the businesses that engage with the locals that create a community, whether it’s a small town by the coast, or a large suburb like Carlton in Melbourne.
Give the people what they want
At the heart of it, people want to live in communities that are safe and prosperous. Shopping locally ensures that businesses can make a living, stay open, and support each other. The knock effects go far beyond simply allowing a business to make money, instead they create an entire structure of support, both for the other businesses around them, and the people that they attract.