Every year around this time, you probably see messages from the media and pundits about shopping and buying from local businesses. And that message is correct – it’s important to purchase from local organizations during the holiday season. It’s a great boost to the local economy. We have a thought about this message though, and we would like to make a slight alteration…
First, chew on this: a study from American Express found that on this year’s Small Business Saturday alone, consumers spent approximately $5.7 billion at locally-owned stores and restaurants. That’s 4% higher than last year. Could you imagine what would happen if we treated every day like Small Business Saturday?
And here’s some more food for thought. Local First Arizona relayed stats produced by Local First, Grand Rapids, Michigan that reveals some great benefits that “keeping it local” offers:
- For every $100 spent at a locally owned business, $73 remains in the local economy and $27 leaves
Conversely, there’s an impact when you don’t keep it local:
- For every $100 spent at a non-locally owned business, $43 remains in the local economy and $57 leaves.
In Western Michigan alone, a 10% shift of spending from chains to locally-owned businesses would create nearly $140 million in new economic activity, add over 1600 new jobs to the area, and provide over $50 million in new wages.
So here’s the deal. While we agree with the “buy local” message, people often relate the thought exclusively to retail and restaurants. In addition to buying gifts and food locally, we should extend this thought to our businesses… we should look to buy parts and supplies from Michigan’s manufacturers….utilizing local manufacturers in our supply chain!
That’s why we would like to offer an addendum to the buy local message: we should be supporting local manufacturers all-year round!
From chemicals and metals to computer parts and electrical equipment, Michigan’s manufacturers supply it all. Don’t believe me? Just take a look at all of the companies in our Proud to Manufacture in Michigan program. No matter your need, there’s probably a local Michigan manufacturer who can help!
Remember, supporting local manufacturers goes beyond the holiday season! Heading into next year, make supporting Michigan’s manufacturers your New Year’s resolution!
Since 1991, MMTC has assisted Michigan’s small and medium-sized businesses compete and grow. Through personalized services fitted to meet the needs of clients, we develop more effective business leaders, drive product and process innovation, promote company-wide operational excellence and foster creative strategies for business growth and greater profitability. Find us at www.mmtc.org