Why do you keep seeing messages to shop small and shop local?
As the Coronavirus starts to spread across the United States, more businesses are temporarily closing. You are probably noticing many social media posts in your feed asking you to support small and local businesses.
I AM a shopkeeper. I co-own a brick and mortar business with my sister. I’m also part of a community of over 1500 shopkeepers. I know our independent retail community well and feel like I can shed some light on the power of sharing and why this is trending on social media.
Small businesses are an integral part of our communities. Small businesses contribute to the economy, the tax base, employment, identity and so much more.
Here’s some information about independent retailers that can help explain why your feed is full of these types of posts right now:
Our businesses are extremely heart-driven, not financially driven.
We don’t have sick time, compensatory time, paid leave, vacation time.
We are givers – more than anything we love to serve our customers.
We are community-focused, we love our local communities and do as much as we can to help our neighborhoods and cities thrive.
We work HARD – the hours rarely equate to the pay.
We are independent and proud – we might struggle, we might incur debt to keep our doors open, but we don’t ask for handouts.
We are STRONG – entrepreneurship is not for the weak-hearted and we figure things out.
Although we are strong and resilient, unfortunately, there are times when we may not be able to keep our businesses going… and the Coronavirus pandemic might be one of those times.
Grit and determination will help but it’s times like now that we are truly SCARED for our businesses and for our shopkeeper friends. We’re in retail – we KNOW the roller coaster ride of entrepreneurship, but this will be different.
We know we chose this path and by no means are we looking for charity. What we are asking for is that you remember us, support us in any way you can and if your financial situation allows, continue to shop with us during this time.
Local businesses are the heart of American communities – if at all possible we are asking that you help keep it that way!
We don’t have the deep pockets of Amazon or big box stores. What we have is YOU.