Shopping locally makes good ‘cents’

Published 11:06 am Monday, February 11, 2013

Think global… shop local; is a phrase we hear quiet often these days. But does the average local shopper really stop and think about what shopping locally really means?

When we shop local we invest in our community, in our neighbors, and in ourselves. In this economic climate, we have to do what we can to survive and to thrive. Shopping locally helps us to do that. It keeps more money in our community; creates local jobs; leads to more choices and diversity; improves customer service; and protect the local culture.

Someone recently posted on my Facebook account a statement that brings what the shopping local phrase down to the grassroots.

“When you buy from a locally owned business, you are not helping a CEO buy a third vacation home. You are helping a little girl get dance lessons, a little boy get his team jersey, a mom or dad put food on the table, a family pay a mortgage, or student pay for college. Our customers are our shareholders and they are ones we strive to make happy.”

Shopping locally just makes good sense for our local merchants, and our local economy. One dollar spent locally turns over three times within the local community, making an even greater impact right here at home. The “small business Saturday” website quotes a statistic: of every $100 spent at small retailers, $68 of it stays in the surrounding communities.

The sales tax paid on local goods and services in our community are put to work immediately, thus helping to make a difference right here at home. Whether it is a trip to the local grocery store or a major purchase, your taxes provide money for local services.

Shopping locally saves time and money for you and helps support local business in our community. In turn, those local businesses are able to keep our local friends and neighbors on their respective payrolls.

Additionally, shopping locally supports our school, our parks, recreation centers, libraries, our local police, fire departments, and other things that make this community a great place to work and live. Simply put, it fuels our economy.

Small local businesses are the fundamental to our community. Each small business makes the towns of the Roanoke-Chowan area a special place.  They are integral part to the life of a community, dependent on long term personal relationships with customers, staff, and suppliers.

Please keep in mind that you can make a difference each time you reach for your wallet by spending money locally.

Joe Cowart is Publisher of Roanoke-Chowan Publications. He can be contacted at or 252-332-7218.