Local businesses make up the fabric of our communities. They are the heart of any hometown, coloring and enriching our downtowns, Main Streets and cities. Most importantly, they are vital to the U.S. economy. Small businesses employ nearly half of all employees in the United States. In 2021, small businesses alone added more than 466,000 jobs to the U.S. economy. Despite that, many small businesses struggle to survive due to competition from big box chains. So, what can you do to support small businesses and ensure a thriving local economy? Here are a few tips on how to support small businesses in your area:
How To Promote Small Businesses
Small, locally-owned businesses are the backbone of the U.S economy and play a crucial role in providing employment opportunities, supporting local charities, and increasing property values. Here are a few ways you can help support small businesses:
Promote Small Businesses on Social Media
If you are looking for ways to support small businesses within your community, it can be as simple as sharing a photo on social media. Make a quick Instagram reel or TikTok video the next time you visit that family-owned diner or your local farmer's market highlighting your favorite dishes or products. This form of free promotion could make the difference between that business existing for years to come or an empty store with a "for lease" sign.
Recommend Local Businesses to Friends and Family
Over one-third of shoppers will only purchase a product at a brick-and-mortar store if someone recommends it. Next time you visit a local store you like, recommend it to people you know. They’ll be more likely to support and buy from that businesses because they trust you, which means keeping another local business afloat for longer.
Boost Their Online Engagement
Commenting, liking, subscribing, and sharing will go a long way in supporting local businesses. Most small businesses don't have the luxury of having a dedicated social media department and therefore, small business owners put a lot of work into their social media and website. You can help boost their engagement by liking their posts, commenting, subscribing and reposting to your feed so your friends and followers can see.
Join the Shop Local Movement
While the Shop Local Movement has been bubbling for years, consumers are pushing the trend to a new apotheosis. Focusing your spending on local businesses in your area is the best way to support small businesses. The best thing about spending your money at local businesses is that the money is recirculated back into the community to help support local charities and maintain public amenities like roads and parks.
Buy Gift Cards
82% of Americans prioritize local stores or buying locally sourced products in order to keep money local. Small business gift cards are one of the best ways to support small businesses. They're great gifts for friends and family and are an excellent opportunity to introduce them to your favorite local spots. The good thing about gift cards for small businesses is that they can only be used at local businesses and since many consumers would rather spend their dollars at a local store than at a big box chain, they will be delighted to receive a gift card for a small businesses over a national brand. It's a win-win!
Small Business Gift Cards
Are you a Chamber of Commerce, Main Street or Downtown Association wondering what more you can do to support small businesses? Launch a Community Card with Yiftee.
Yiftee Community Gift Cards help keep local dollars local. Yiftee works with more than 500 Main Streets, Downtown Associations, Chambers of Commerce and City Governments to support local businesses.
How does the program work? Community Cards link your business to a single eGift Card that recipients can only use at local businesses. This gift card program for small businesses is free for your company to launch and free for your participating merchants.
Community Cards are purchased by individuals and companies alike. Companies use them as employee rewards, anniversary and birthday gifts, teacher rewards and for community events like raffles and giveaways. Recipients will then use the gift cards at local businesses, keeping local dollars local. Contact Yiftee or schedule a demo to see how the Community Card program can help your community thrive by supporting your local businesses.