Our View: Shopping local, shopping small offers benefits
Not so long ago, Black Friday was an actual day and the big question for residents was whether to head to the big cities for Christmas shopping.
These days, Black Friday deals started online a few weeks ago and the big consumer question is whether to punch the buy button on an internet site.
We’d like to join the voices of reason who say the shopping part of the holidays is much more satisfying when it’s real, live and in person exploring the many offerings in the local stores both large and small.
The recent emphasis has been on small, thanks to an American Express promotion begun during the Great Recession. The Kingman Area Chamber of Commerce is a backer of the Shop Small program.
Shop Small is a great program, reinforcing the idea that small shops offer very interesting, very cool goods and services that might get overlooked in the season retail mania. Yet retail is no longer just about large versus small. It’s about real stores versus digital ones. For many good reasons, shopping local in stores both large and small offers a bundle of benefits.
Maintaining tradition is one. There are a variety of events as the city comes alive with the feel of Christmas.
It serves as a seasonal reminder of the role local businesses play in supporting community programs this time of year as well as all through the calendar.
When shopping dollars are spent locally, smart consumers know they get a double return.
Those shopping dollars get turned into jobs, support of youth sports and local events and, along the way, provide good financial value.
The local jobs are all-important. Payroll dollars spread around to other businesses, improving the overall economy and providing sales taxes that allow local government to provide many vital municipal services, such as street repairs, and fire and police protection.
And there’s this: The fun of browsing and buying in the many small stores offering gift items, discovering hidden finds and enjoying the experience.
The benefits to shopping locally are numerous. The community will be better off if everyone recognizes it.