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When the COVID19 pandemic broke out nearly every aspect of life had experienced dramatic change, and and one of the biggest places this change made the most impact on is in the world of retail. The good news is, the drastic change in customers’ shopping habits as they shift away from expensive lifestyles and costly products and commodities to cut down daily expenses, has shed light and brought more prominence to local, independent businesses.

Consumers have emerged from the lengthy lockdown still wary of risk, reluctant to travel long distances, and encounter large crowds or risky safety measures. And many feel a sense of loyalty to local shops and are grateful that they’re still serving the local community. People appreciate and value small businesses that have fought their way through to survive.

More than ever before, support for independent small businesses has soared as they showed their value in their unique offering, first-rate shopping experience, and customer convenience. 

Here are some figures to back that up:

  • People are starting to tip local business’ workers more - According to a May CNBC.com story, 68% of people tipped more than they usually do between April 9 to April 14 of 2020. 
  • Consumers prefer local market shopping for daily produce over groceries and supermarkets – Beginning in April, small-scale food producers began to see an uptick in sales, according to Reuters. With restaurants closed and some consumers too nervous to wade the tight grocery store aisles, people began to shop locally for produce.
  • Boost sales in online platforms – Savvy small businesses that invested in online shopping sites pre-COVID-19 are reaping their rewards now. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce cites Gary’s Wine and Marketplace, a small four-shop chain, and their mobile app, which has exceeded expectations during this time. Before the pandemic, it had 2,000 users. By the second week of April, 15,000 people were using it—a 750% increase. 
  • Shoppers don’t want to see their favorite local businesses fail, so they intentionally support them – And that’s true now more than ever. The National Retail Federation reports that 49% of consumers “have made a purchase specifically to support local small businesses during the pandemic.”

Read our blog on #ShopLocal to find out how small businesses can take advantage of this growing consciousness among consumers to support local business.


Edited by Chooli
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