FAQs

Here you will find a collection our most popular questions that can help you understand and promote the benefits of “buying local”.If you have any suggestions to add to this collection, please don’t hesitate to email us at info@independentwestand.org What is IWS?
What will happen when I “Shop Local”?
Why Now?
What other groups are promoting independent businesses?
What do you hope to accomplish?
How do I get involved?
Who is currently supporting the effort?
Who should I contact if I’d like to help sponsor IWS?

What is IWS?

Independent We Stand is a movement of independently owned businesses across the country dedicated to educating their communities about the importance-and the benefits-of “buying local.”

What will happen when I “Shop Local”?

When you buy products and services from independent locally-owned and operated businesses, you support the community in many ways:

Independent We StandThe Economy

  • Small businesses accounted for 65% of all net new jobs over the past 17 years.
  • Small businesses employ 77 million Americans.
  • 89% of consumers agree that independent businesses contribute positively to local economies.
  • Residential neighborhoods served by a successful independent business district gained, on average, 50% more in home values than their citywide markets.
  • Independent retailers return more than three times as much money per dollar of sales than chain competitors. Independent restaurants return more than two times as much money per dollar of sales than national restaurant chains.
  • If independent businesses regained their 1990 market shares, it would create 200,000 new small businesses, generate nearly $300 billion in revenues and employ more than 1.6 million American workers.
  • If just half the U.S.  employed population spent $50 each month in locally owned independent businesses, it would generate more than $42.6 billion in revenue.
  • For every square foot a local firm occupies, the local economy gains $179 vs. $105 for a chain store.

Sources: Small Business Administration; Intuit Small Business Innovation Study;  American Express OPEN Independent Retail Index; Civic Economics/American Booksellers Assoc., U.S. Dept. of Labor

The Community

Did you know independent locally owned and operated businesses…

  • Are run by your neighbors—maybe even friends or family? They genuinely care about the well-being of your community because it’s their home too.
  • Are among the first to offer their communities a helping hand? Small businesses donate about twice as much per employee to charitable organizations as large businesses.*
  • Add character, quality and charm to your community, not to mention more choices? Often these smaller shops carry items that bigger stores don’t sell—usually because there’s not enough of the really good stuff to go around or the profit margin isn’t high enough for the big guys to stock.
*Source: Small Business Administration

The Environment

  • When you shop at independent locally owned and operated businesses, you are contributing to a smaller carbon footprint. Products often require less packaging and don’t travel as far.
  • Many independent locally owned and operated businesses can be found in established business districts, which mean less infrastructure, less maintenance and less wear and tear on your community.

Why now?

It is time for us to take matters into our own hands. YOU can do something to help YOUR local community. Economists believe the greatest hope for a full recovery lies with small, locally owned businesses. They have been and always will be the backbone of our economy. Support your community’s independent locally owned businesses and you can help make a difference.

What other groups are promoting independent businesses?

Independent We Stand is proud to join the more than 160 groups supporting the shop local message. IWS supports these local groups in their efforts to keep hard-earned dollars in local communities.

What do you hope to accomplish?

The IWS goal is to revive small businesses by helping independently owned and operated businesses gain more sales transactions in their own community. This will generate new jobs, which will lead to more local income that can be reinvested to strengthen the local community overall and make it a better place to live.

How do I get involved?

Who is currently supporting the effort?

STIHL Inc. and Chrysler Group are co-sponsors of Independent We Stand. In addition, Devoe Paint and ARI Network Services are associate sponsors.  More proof that big companies are beginning to understand the power of independent businesses.

Who should I contact if I’d like to help sponsor IWS?

Contact Independent We Stand at (888) 787-8IWS to find out more about how you can help support the cause.