The Gunnison community as a whole is a big fan of shopping locally. Bumper stickers proclaiming “Shop Local” abound, and customers are genuinely disappointed when they are told that the most likely place to find certain items are the Big Chains. As Treads ‘N’ Threads is a small, locally owned business, we similarly encourage all to shop locally, but it’s not just to help our own business. Check out the reasons below why we believe you should shop locally.
1) Small businesses are the largest employers in the United States
Most new jobs are created by small businesses. In times like these where unemployment has nationally remained stuck at 9%, we can’t afford to not support the businesses that employ the most people.
2) Money tends to stay in the community
The money you spend in a local store support payroll for the staff, who then take their checks and spend it back in the community. When you shop at a Big Chain store, paychecks are lower on average (less money to put back in your community), and a good chunk of that money goes up to corporate offices, usually located hundreds, if not thousands, of miles from your local area.
3) Having strong local businesses keeps a community unique
Having a nice selection of local shops gives an area character. This matters because people are more likely to go to a place that is distinct; it feels like someplace, not just anyplace. When you support a small business, you keep them alive, which gives others the opportunity to shop there as well. This positive cycle perpetuates for as long as these businesses remain supported. We have customers from all over the country who return to Treads ‘N’ Threads every year while on vacation. Without their support, we wouldn’t be the same business.
4) Local businesses support their own communities.
These business owners care about their reputations in their communities and are more likely to be invested and heavily involved in community goings-on. They are also more likely to donate or support non-profits, unlike chains which are often limited in the support they can give. Treads ‘N’ Threads donates raffle prizes for various events to non-profits in the Gunnison community. We also allow non-profits to set up a display in one of our windows for several weeks. The free exposure is priceless for these groups, and it allows our business to support multiple non-profits in our community that do so much.
5) While the internet is convenient, small businesses offer more.
More information, better service, and the opportunity to try things on. Staff at Treads ‘N’ Threads can help you find the best shoes for your feet, and you can try them on (without sending them back if they don’t fit quite right!). We can steer you from shoes that would worsen your plantar fasciitis, we can tell you the best shoes for working long hours on your feet, we can help you find the perfect gift for your sister (or dad, uncle, or daughter). Staff at smaller businesses must become mini experts on whatever it is they sell, which means that the customers benefits from their product knowledge too.