Here are 10 reasons to spend your holiday shopping dollars “at home” in Yalobusha County:
• Maintaining diversity and community character: Local businesses reflect the character of their community through their unique products, services, and atmosphere and through their location in historic buildings, which preserve an authentic sense of place.
• Vibrant downtown business districts help reduce sprawl. They embody smart growth principles by concentrating retail; offering housing downtown or nearby to create pedestrian-friendly communities; and using community resources, such as infrastructure, tax dollars, and land, wisely.
• Historic preservation is the ultimate recycling. When buildings are demolished, most of the materials are used for land fill. By finding new uses for historic buildings, we reduce demand for new materials and prevent unnecessary land fill. Many downtown businesses are located in rehabilitated historic buildings.
• Commercial districts are prominent employment centers. Even the smallest commercial district employs numerous people.
• Downtown businesses are home to entrepreneurs. Small businesses are the lifeblood of social mobility, enabling people to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. A marketplace of thousands of small businesses ensures innovation.
• Thousands of small businesses offering products based on the needs of their customers instead of a national sales plan promote a wider array of choices for consumers.
• Downtown districts provides an important civic forum, where members of the community can congregate. Parades, special events, and celebrations held on Main Street reinforce an intangible sense of community.
• Everyone benefits from revitalized downtowns. From residents to financial institutions, from property owners to local governments, everyone is better off with a vibrant downtown business district.
• Historic shopping districts also boost the community’s heritage tourism potential, which can be a significant revenue generator for downtown businesses. Cultural heritage travelers spend, on average, $623 per trip compared to $457 for all U.S. travelers.
• Forty-four percent of cultural heritage travelers shop during their trips, compared to 33 percent of all other travelers.
Community-based businesses give more time and money to community activities. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, small businesses give more time and money to charitable organizations than their large competitors.
Buying from independent businesses has a greater economic impact. Recent studies have shown that a larger share of each dollar spent in a local business stays in the community as compared to chain stores. Furthermore, the economic impact of dollars spent at local businesses is increased through a local multiplier effect.