1.Your spending will boost the local economy
Research on spending done by local authorities shows that for every £1 spent with a small or medium-sized business 63p stayed in the local economy, compared to 40p with a larger business. High streets populated with thriving independent businesses boost the prices of nearby homes according to a recent study. Research by American Express found that house prices near a prosperous town centre have risen by an average of £40,000 more over the past decade than other properties.
2.It is the ethical choice
When you shop at local butchers, bakers, farm shops and green grocers, it is likely that a decent percentage of the produce has had a short field-to-fork journey. Along with supporting local farmers, it means the food is likely to contain more nutrients and have less packaging.
With regards to local service industries you are benefitting from local experience, knowledge and advice on your local area and market. Resources and focus are less likely to be distorted by need and success of other branches in different areas and long-term goals of expansion.
3.You will be supporting British entrepreneurs
Through supporting your local businesses, you are helping to support local entrepreneurs who once may not have had a chance of getting their company started. Through more people choosing the smaller, local option over the larger chain businesses it is allowing more entrepreneurs to get their foot in the door, thus making for a very healthy economy.
4.You can help build communities
Bookshops, cafes and craft shops often drum up custom by hosting events, from book groups to knitting clubs and children's events. If the businesses are not supported, the local groups tend to disappear too.
Some local businesses will actually help shape the identity of the community. A high street filled with unique, vibrant and colourful shops is likely to attract more tourism and help to make the community a more popular and financially healthy area in which to live and work. There are many places around the UK that are known for exactly this such as Camden and even our very own communities such as Montpellier, Bishops Cleeve and the Bath Road.
5.Healthy competition offers choice and great offers
The reason local companies have such great and competitive prices is purely thanks to healthy competition. This, of course, goes for all types of companies. A marketplace of thousands of small businesses is the most reliable way to ensure innovation and low prices over the long-term.
Independent retailers are more likely to be able to use their discretion to reward regular custom, and it can mean you get discounts on the items you actually want to buy, rather than being tempted by multi-buy offers in the big chains. Local initiatives such as The Local One, are emerging to try to attract and encourage consumers to shop locally by offering exclusive offers and discounts.