As a local business owner, you understand the importance of shopping local because you live and breathe it. Heck, you may even bleed it.
But guess what? Your customers may not. And that’s exactly why it’s up to you to continually remind them of the impact they have when they shop local.
Maybe you shout it from a mountaintop or scream it while you run down the street… or maybe you just check out the three easy ways below to educate your customers on shopping local.
- Use Your Social Savvy
Social media is the perfect platform to educate customers – and prospective customers – on why making the choice to shop local is so awesome.
Tweet statistics that highlight the impact shop-local supporters have:
- “Small businesses accounted for 65% of all net new jobs over the past 17 years.”
- “89% of consumers agree that independent businesses contribute positively to local economies.”
- “Independent retailers return more than three times as much money per dollar of sales than chain competitors.”
- Get more stats here.
- Take advantage of free shop-local graphics that will highlight the fact that you’re a local business owner and constantly remind customers that they should feel good about spending money at your business.
- Write blog posts that remind customers of the benefits of shopping local, or if you don’t have your own blog, share great posts about this topic with your followers.
- Showcase your local status in your social bios so followers know instantly that you’re a local business. Use #shoplocal too so those interested in this topic can easily find you.
- Take Part in Local Business Events Like Shift10 Day
When you unite with other local business owners, you only become stronger. (And you only help to further the shop-local movement.)
You can do this by taking part in events like Shift10 Day, a nationwide movement founded by Scott’s Marketplace, that encourages shoppers to shift 10% of their spending to independent businesses year-round.
Here’s how you can get involved:
- Connect with Shift10 on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram
- Encourage your social media followers (and email your subscribers) to take the pledge to shift 10% of their spending everyday
- Become a Shift10 Ambassador
- Purchase Shift10-branded packaging supplies
- Plan a Shift10 giveaway for your customers
- Make the pledge to shift 10% of your spending, too!
- Spread the Word Far and Wide
It doesn’t matter if you sell exclusively online or only have a brick-and-mortar store, you should always make sure customers understand the impact their purchase has made on your local business.
- Include a little note in each shipment thanking your customers for supporting a local business. Include a statistic (like the ones above) and sign it to give it a personal touch.
- Hang shop-local signs in your retail location and/or place them on your website.
- Buy shop-local stickers for an affordable way to ‘localize’ your packaging.
- Provide some shop-local stats in each thank-you email you send to your customers after they’ve made a purchase.
- Update your ‘about us’ page on your website and online store with details of your personal business story. Talk about the passion you have for what you do, and the story behind it to make a personal connection with your customers.
Do Your Part
The shop-local movement needs you to do your part to educate consumers about the hows and whys of shopping local.
It’s easy for consumers to default to chain stores, but if you are constantly reminding them that their money is better spent at a local store, it’s eventually going to stick. (And benefit you in the long run!)
So go ahead, shout the benefits of shopping local from a mountaintop – it’s for the good of local business owners everywhere -- and just think of all the exercise you’ll be getting too!
How do you educate customers on the importance of shopping local?
Bio: Shannon is the director of content marketing for Scott's Marketplace. She enjoys reading, writing, daydreaming, and brunching with bottomless mimosas (and she's never met an animal she didn't like)! Send her a tweet and tell her what your favorite book is!