As of December 2015, there were 1.14 million small businesses operating in Canada employing 8.2 million people. For perspective, that's close to a quarter of Canada's population working for small businesses. All of these numbers highlight the importance of small businesses in Canada and clearly show why you should support small business owners. Here are a few more:
1. Unique Products
Go into one of the boutique gift shops in that little town you drive through daily and you will be pleasantly surprised by the diverse selection of products, and more often than not, some of those products will be made locally. Shop a small curated online gift shop instead of the ecommerce giants and you will be astonished by the unique product offerings, not to mention the high quality of said items. Who wants cheap dollar store shit anyway?
2. The Best Customer Service
Small business owners are very proud of their business and truly love what they do. That translates into stellar customer service. They want to ensure your shopping experience is the best that it possibly can be so you keep coming back to support them.
3. Fulfilling Experience
It feels so good to support small business. Period. Tell me a time when you walked into a Mom and Pop shop and left feeling crappy? It just doesn't happen. Small business owners are so thankful for the support that they will bend over backwards to ensure your experience is second to none.
4. Support Local Economy
Research shows that money spent locally stays locally. A cool study in Chicago found that: independent locally-owned businesses recirculate a far greater percentage of revenue locally compared to absentee-owned businesses (chains, big box stores). In other words, going local creates more local wealth and jobs. Content Source: https://www.amiba.net/resources/multiplier-effect/ The more you support your local shops and small businesses, the better off your community will be. Small businesses are the backbone of communities and supporting them will ensure your community thrives.
5. Affirming Business Owners Dreams
Perhaps the most important and often overlooked reason is that supporting small business affirms all of the unbelievably hard work small businesses put into their business. They are absolutely busting their asses to realize their dreams and when you buy from and support them it makes all that hard work worth it. The lulls (especially in retail) are gut wrenching, deflating and discouraging. Which makes the highs (a.k.a. the support, especially from the local community), feel like Christmas. It is true that when you buy from a small business an actual person does a happy dance. And her husband and 18 month old daughter are right there beside her sharing in that happy dance.
So next time you think about heading to the big box store, ecommerce giant or across the border, why don't you give that small business on your main street or small ecommerce shop a try? You won't be disappointed.