Holiday shopping is here!
Consider purchasing more from your local small businesses this season, as shopping locally is excellent for the health of your local economy. By keeping your money circulating locally instead of sending it to away, you improve your community by raising the wealth of your neighborhood. Supporting small businesses also helps build social relationships. You get to know where the stuff that you buy comes from and you can have interesting conversations with the people who made or sold it. Shopping locally is also great for the environment, as it reduces carbon emissions from shipping and travel. Considering getting some gifts this holiday season that support your local small businesses. Here are some ideas to help you shop locally:
1. Make a day of it.
Go out with someone and get them something from a local shop that catches their eye. Keeps the guesswork out of the gifting, and you get to enjoy some quality time together.
2. Stop for lunch or dinner at a local restaurant.
Eating locally is a great way to support the culinary scene in your town. If you are already spending a day out, it can be a convenient treat to stop and get something to eat. Some of the best places can be a “best-kept” secret that you may have to search for. But it is always worth it because when you find amazing food, you will keep coming back for more.
3. Check out local artists and artisans to explore new ideas for gift-giving.
Unique gifts simply cannot be bought mass-produced. That might seem redundant, but it is worth mentioning because the most interesting and unique gifts are made by hand. If you get something that can’t be replicated, it will be cherished for a long time. This is an especially great tip if you are shopping for someone who lives in a different area than you. If you give them something from a local business, it will be appreciated more because you are also gifting a special part of your town.
4. Give an experience.
Get something that can’t be wrapped and won’t be confined to the mantel or the attic for the rest of its life. For that person who already has all the thingamabobs and whatchamacallits already, you can gift them tickets to a local show or an event. For the foodies, you could give them a gift card to a local restaurant so that they can enjoy a meal out on you. If you are not sure what they might want, a gift card to a local boutique lets them pick out their perfect gift for themselves. Check the upcoming events near you and see if you can score any great deals.
5. Sign up for a CSA
If you like to cook and enjoy fresh veggies and meats, signing up for a community supported agriculture (CSA) farm share (or gifting one) is a great way to support local agriculture. These shares allow you to purchase a food subscription from a local farm. This is great because the farmers can guarantee a customer for the season, and you get fresh, local foods on a regular basis. It’s a win-win!
Supporting Local Businesses
6. Leave a Google Review.
What is the first thing that you do before going to a new business? Check the reviews, of course! This is one of the easiest and best ways to support your favorite local vendors. When you leave a stellar review on Google, Yelp, Facebook and the like, it helps that business show up more often when people are searching, and your feedback helps inform customers about why they should give that place a try.
7. Engage on social media.
Another great way to support local businesses is to interact with them on social media. Repost their pictures, comment on their posts, and like the things that they share. This helps them grow their following so that they can continue to serve your community for a long time.
8. Go with local alternatives instead of online choices.
It can be very easy to succumb to online or superstore shopping. However, supporting local artists and vendors can be just as easy. If you need to get some shopping done you can often find most of the stuff in town instead of outsourcing it from across the country or the world. Even if you could get free shipping online, you are often compromising for it with the quality of goods you buy. Locally produced goods are often high-quality and last a long time.