Many of you know that I occasionally blog about local businesses, aka mom and pops. But just what is a mom and pop and how are they important to your local economy? I searched the net for a better answer than I could give on my own. This is part of what I found,….
By opening up new national level chain stores, the profits of locally owned businesses greatly decrease and many businesses end up failing and having to close. This creates an exponential effect. When one store closes, people lose their jobs, other businesses lose business from the failed business and so on. In many cases large firms displace just as many jobs as they create. Not only that but it also increases the costs of taxes. Instead of increasing a community’s revenue, big businesses actually shift money away from the community. Independent businesses depend on the many resources that a community can supply. They hire architects, contractors, hardware stores, interior designers, local advertisement agencies, accountants, business attorneys, and insurance companies. Local businesses also are more likely to supply locally produced products than chains, ultimately benefiting their community. Large corporations on the other hand eliminate the need for local goods and services. >. [Milchen]
A lack of diversity can decrease the revenues in a community. When towns are interesting, they attract people from out of town. More personality and individuality can lead to more tourists, which, in turn leads to money placed directly into the community [Santa Fe Independent Business Report] ). The diversity of businesses is also important to the individuality of consumers. Oftentimes, independent retailers can adjust the products that they sell in order to fit the needs of their consumers and the unique tastes of their community. Local businesses are also more likely to support unique, new, and/or controversial products. Local bookstores can provide controversial books and can support small authors or local authors. The same idea helps out with local art and music. Bookstores and music shops are more likely to support local art and music than the mainstream stuff that large corporations provide.[Mitchell] Business chains decrease a community’s individuality because they ultimately choose what products reach their customers. This greatly narrows what products are available and shrinks diversity. This comes from Wikipedia/Small Business .
I really liked the part where it states mom and pops are more likely to hire architects, contractors, hardware stores, interior designers, local advertisement agencies, accountants, business attorneys, and insurance companies. Mom and pop businesses are more likely to hire other types of local business for their needs. A “you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours kind of thing”. The first sentence, opening up new national level chain stores, the profits of locally owned businesses greatly decrease and many businesses end up failing and having to close, holds true many times. An example is WalMart. This mega giant has closed many local businesses. Local businesses put more back into the community and add a flair to the local landscape that big business cannot do. I really believe that big box stores can suck the life out of local business. Try to shop and eat local as often as you can. Skip going to Walgreens or Rite Aid and shop at Avalon Drugs in Muscle Shoals or Northgate Pharmacy in Florence. Forget Buffalo Wild Wings and give FloBama, Ricatoni’s, Wing Shack or other downtown restaurants a try. Drive by Five Guys and opt for Montagues or Staggs for a burger. Need some nails? Try Peck Ace Hardware in North Florence where you can purchase them by the pound as opposed to a box at Lowes. Need things for planting your garden? Stumpe Backyard Nursery has the items you need so you don’t have to go to the garden center at WalMart. Need computer repair? ShoalsWEB provides you with your computer needs with personal service as opposed to Office Depot or Best Buy. Shopping local has many benefits not only to the customer but to your community as well. Shopping local is a mindset. Program your mind to help support local business.