The Importance of Shopping Locally
How many times in recent years have you been disappointed to hear about the closure of a locally owned store in an Irish city, town or village and wondered if there was anything that could have been done to prevent it? The good news is that there is! Just continue to shop with your local businesses and support them.
The economic benefits of shopping local
Local business owners have good reason to support other local businesses, both personally and professionally. They spend their money locally, using local services, such as accountants, solicitors, and insurance brokers. They also employ local people and source many of their products from local suppliers.
- Every €10 spent locally on Irish products generates €24 of benefit to the local community, and
- 45 cents of every Euro spent is reinvested locally in comparison to only 15 cents for the foreign multiple-national companies.*
According to the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association (ISME) Chief Executive, Mark Fielding, “If every consumer switched just one tenth of their ‘imported shopping’ to Irish produced goods it would shift the balance in favour of local producers, manufacturers and retailers and go a long way to sustaining Irish jobs..”
The longer term benefits of shopping local
Studies have shown that there are also long-term social and economic benefits for towns and villages that are able to preserve unique businesses with distinctive character. They help to sustain vibrant, compact town centres. They also increase housing prices. A 2013 U.K study found that house prices near a high street full of thriving independent business rose an average of £40,000 more over the previous decade than areas with proportionately fewer independent traders.
Other benefits of shopping local
Apart from directly helping to keep your local businesses in business, your local town unique and your local economy afloat, there are many, more selfish reasons to shop in your local businesses. These include:
- building a personal relationship with the local store and its owner and employees
- receiving better, more personalised customer service from people who know your name and your personal tastes and interests
- accessing a greater variety of quirky, one-off gifts
- having available a wealth of locally sourced, ethically produced products from local farms, bakers, grocers etc, often with the option to sample the products before you buy
- receiving great advice and a better deal on products you actually need or want to buy, rather than those the multi-nationals force on you through multi-buy offers and other gimmicks, and
- being free from hidden or unaccounted for costs, such as time, petrol, postage on returns, taxes and charges. (For information on some of the hidden costs when shopping with an overseas online business, see my recent article here).
So next time you need to buy, think local, buy local.
To read more, see my post on Shopping Local at Christmas.
Running a business or thinking of setting up a business? Contact us to discuss your options.
* Source: The Irish Small and Medium Enterprise Association (ISME)
The material in this article is for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal or taxation advice. Specific legal and taxation advice should be sought before acting. All information and taxation rules are subject to change without notice.
No liability whatsoever is accepted by M. McLoughlin & Co. for any action taken in reliance on the information in this article
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