While Love Live Local has been working for almost a decade to expound upon the virtues of shopping local, there are still a few stories people tell themselves about why they can’t or shouldn’t shop local.
1. It doesn’t really matter
Although it is hard to imagine that as an individual our purchases have a significant impact in such a large global economy, it is important to know that they do make a difference for the local business’ bottom line and the Cape Cod community.
Amazon ships out almost 2 million orders a day. In that regard, your purchase wouldn’t have an impact. But for local businesses that do about .00001% of that daily business, each and every customer that walks in their door plays an important role in their story and their success.
Also, spending your dollars locally generates much more economic prosperity, as local businesses reinvest their sales income into the local economy at a much higher rate. In fact, if 10% of the retail purchases made on Cape Cod with a national corporation were made with a local store, we could generate $110 million more for our local economy.
2. Local businesses offer less selection
True, logistically smaller brick & mortar establishments might have less space in which to stock and store items, but many businesses will work to find what you’re looking for by placing a special order with their suppliers or by offering an alternative that is just as good.
However, local shops often carry independent designers or artisanal products you don’t see in larger establishments and the more small businesses we have in every sector of the economy, the more choice and selection we will have overall.
3. Shopping local is inconvenient
Most local businesses have an online presence where you can shop for products and services virtually any time of day and have your order delivered to your door or ready for you to pick up at your convenience.
If you prefer in person interactions, oftentimes a Saturday shopping excursion is faster at a local store because the dedicated staff is so good at helping you find exactly what you are looking for rather than leaving you to wander an anonymous one-size-fits-all store or behemoth of a website without any assistance.
4.Buying local costs more
While it is sometimes the case that local goods and services are more expensive, for the most part, local businesses price their products competitively (that’s just good business).
If something does happen to cost more, it’s important to note that local businesses tend to offer higher quality goods and have a greater working knowledge of the product. And when you consider that spending your money with local businesses like retailers and restaurants means that 2-4 times the amount of that money is reinvested in the Cape Cod community, paying for that marginally increased price probably feels good after all.
For the most part, dispelling these myths is about challenging your own assumptions and changing a few habits, which can make a huge differences for our local businesses and our local economy.