It’s finally New Year’s Eve, the last day of 2020. It’s the perfect time to reflect on the last year and think ahead of what’s to come in 2021.
If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that we have very little control over the future, but what we can do is make a conscious effort to change the way we live our lives. When all is said and done, that’s what New Year’s resolutions are all about.
This is the perfect year to change the way you spend money by making a commitment to yourself to shop local whenever possible.
7 reasons to make supporting local businesses your 2021 New Year’s resolution
#1. It’s easy to keep
Did you know that the vast majority of New Year’s resolutions people make are abandoned by February? There are many reasons for this, but one of the biggest reasons is that a lot of people make resolutions that are too vague to actually achieve.
For example, a lot of people resolve to lose weight in the New Year. But, “losing weight” can mean anything, and unless you have a specific goal in mind, it’s not really possible to actually reach it.
On the other hand, specific goals are only acceptable if they are also achievable. If your goal is to lose 50 pounds, the chances of reaching it aren’t good. But, simply committing to shopping at local businesses whenever possible is both easy and achievable.
#2. You’ll be supporting local jobs
Cities will often do almost anything to attract big businesses. Just look at how many cities offered millions of dollars in tax incentives to Amazon when it was looking for new headquarters a couple of years ago.
You’d think with all the hoopla that big businesses are what employ most Americans, but the fact of the matter is that local businesses are responsible for many, many local jobs.
When local businesses do well, they hire more people within your community. That creates and supports quality jobs that often provide better job satisfaction than similar jobs at corporations and big businesses.
#3. You don’t need any special equipment
For some resolutions, everything you need to achieve them you already have. But, that’s not the case with every resolution.
Let’s look at the weight loss example again. In order to actually lose weight, you may need to sign up for a gym membership or sessions with a personal trainer. You may need to restock your pantry with healthier options, or invest in a new pair of running shoes.
When you resolve to support local businesses, you don’t need to sign up for extra services or spend an arm and a leg on extra equipment. You simply need to choose a local business for your needs.
#4. More of your money will stay in your community
When you spend money at a big box store, much of the profit goes to shareholders who have absolutely no ties or connection to your community. Furthermore, products and supplies likely won’t come from your community; most won’t even come from the United States at all.
Local businesses, on the other hand, are a lot more likely to get the equipment and supplies they need locally, and to choose local manufacturers or artists for their inventory. Furthermore, their rent will go to a local landlord, their profits benefit the local economy and their charitable donations will go to local nonprofits.
When you support local businesses, you help to support your community. It’s as simple as that.
#5. Find new, go-to spots around town
I’ve lived in the same city for more than a decade. You’d think I’d have visited every restaurant and little shop it has to offer, but the truth is that I have a few favorite places and rarely ever check out any of the other great local businesses my city has to offer.
If you’re anything like me, you may need a little something to push you away from your comfort zone. Making the commitment to support local businesses gives you an incentive to do just that, and you may just find some new go-to spots along the way.
Let’s say you love a good hamburger. Rather than stopping at the drive-thru of a chain, order take-out from a local hamburger place instead. You’re almost guaranteed to have a better experience, and a new favorite restaurant to grab a burger.
#6. You’ll help to keep your community special
Almost every city in the United States has the same Walmart with the same layout, as well as the same McDonald’s and Starbucks with the same menus, etc.
There’s a reason why you chose the community you’re living in, and it’s not because it’s exactly like every other community in the nation. It’s because it has something special, and small businesses are what help to make it special.
Local businesses are the lifeblood of their community. By making a choice to support the local businesses in your community, you’re also helping to support the very thing that makes your community so special and unique.
#7. You don’t need a plan to be successful
Most New Year’s resolutions often consist of big goals that take major lifestyle changes in order to accomplish. Weight loss is another great example of this.
Losing weight — and actually keeping it off — requires major disruptions in how you go about your daily routine. Where you once might have enjoyed heating up a frozen pizza for dinner while catching up on your favorite show, you now spend your evenings going for a run and preparing your food for the next day. In other words, you need to have a plan.
The beauty of making supporting local businesses your resolution is that you don’t have to change your normal routine all that much, nor do you need a big, sweeping plan to achieve your objective.
Want to support the local businesses in your community? Find great local businesses near you with Top Rated Local®.
Top Rated Local is a local business directory like no other. Not only does it make it easy to find local businesses in your area, but you can also compare local businesses side by side, read reviews from across the web and identify the highest-rated businesses near you.