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The Difference Between Shopping Small and Shopping Big-Box

shop small

What kind of shopper would you best describe yourself as? Are you the type who likes to shop and dine at small businesses, or would you rather go for bulk purchases at big-box retailers? Well, we’ll talk about the difference between the two types of shopping, and why certain people would prefer one or the other!

Cares about quality

If your primary objective is to save as many dollars as you can and go for the lowest possible prices, then big box stores might be the best choice for you. However, if you are the kind who cares a lot about quality, you will probably have to shop small for certain items.

The question is, what is shopping small? It’s pretty simple…. This simply means shopping at small boutiques, as opposed to big retail stores, such as your Walmart, Superstore, Costco, Canadian Tire, you name them!

You’re probably wondering what are some of the advantages that come with shopping at smaller boutiques…. Well, I’ll tell you! How many times have you run to big-box stores such as Walmart shopping say, for shoes, only to find that the choice is very limited, to a point where you’re forced to choose from relatively low-quality store brands? It happens all the time!

Your solution to this… Go to some small boutiques! Never mind the slightly higher prices, but shopping small at these boutiques will get you a wider choice of your favourite items, and in the next section, we discuss how shopping small also does a lot to help the community.

Help define community

In small Vancouver Island communities, local businesses are managed and operated by your very own neighbours! So why wouldn’t you shop small and support them? It shows that we care for and respect small business owners!

After all, they need to pay bills and put food on their plates! Personally, I’ve always seen shopping small as a helpful way of giving back to the community. In the next section, we discuss how small businesses give back more to the community than big-box stores.

Money goes back into the community

Did you know that small business are much more important to society than you think? Have you ever tried to imagine your neighbourhood, let alone your city without its small businesses? Well, there you got it!

The majority of companies around are small businesses. And what does this mean? Firstly, they create a lot of jobs! Secondly, they pay tax… and lots of it! That’s money that government needs to pay for your roads, your parks, your kids’ schools, etc….

If all small businesses were to disappear overnight, not only would you lose your favourite coffee shops, hair salons, barbershops, spas, restaurants, and so much more… That would be lots of tax dollars lost! To cut it short, shop small every now and then! It’s a great way of putting money into our community!

Super passionate about their work

Has anyone noticed how passionate small business owners are about what they do? These are clearly driven people who really want to see their businesses succeed. We gotta commend the passion they put into their work because starting a business and keeping it running successfully is no easy task. Their determination and motivation to succeed are just phenomenal and as a community, it’s just fair that we reward and support them for that by shopping small!

You're bringing great energy into your home

For small business owners, running their store often is not only their livelihood and primary source of income…. It’s their greatest passion! To many of them, there’s no better feeling of satisfaction than serving you well and it’s an achievement that they’d always be so proud to go and share with family at home. Just that feeling of knowing that owner does a happy dance each time we make a purchase or follow them on Instagram brings a great sense of pride to both of our homes!

Lots of personalizations

Often, shopping small involves directly interacting with the CEO and owner of the store during every purchase. Wouldn’t you love that personalized shopping experience where you can clearly see that you’re interacting with a real person who is not only serving you directly but also managing the entire business? The very reason for this is that for small businesses, every single customer matters. As such, they try to offer as many personalizations as they can to create a great shopping experience.

Educates you

One of the biggest takeaways from shopping small is that you get to learn a lot from small business owners. How many of you know the CEOs of Walmart, Costco, or Canadian Tire on a personal level to a point where they even care when your birthday is when you’re graduating from university, and the fact that you just got engaged? The reality is that you won’t get this kind of personal interaction with the CEOs of big-box stores.

With shopping small, the owner would even go as far as physically checking, and making sure your order is fulfilled. You’ll even be surprised at how and caring they’d be to take a few moments, chat, and educate you a bit regarding how to best use the items you’ve bought. Small business owners strive to be friendly, become a key part of their customers’ lives, and in the process, educate them.

Appreciates you

How many of you have wondered just how and why some small business owners are so appreciative? The thing is that every single purchase you make matters to them, knowing that this physical interaction gives you the assurance and personal pride of having helped a small business owner with their livelihood. And just consider how much more flexible, friendlier, and accommodating small business owners would be with customers especially when it comes to key aspects such as return policies!

Listens to your needs

Small business owners generally care about their customers. Personally, it would always give me confidence and peace of mind that they would care more about providing me with good quality products and a great customer experience than I would get at many big-box stores!

Buy from you too if you’re a small biz owner yourself

I’ve often noticed that many shopping small is much more about just that great experience that comes with one-on-one interactions with the business owners. The fact that shopping small involves interactions with real people allows us that opportunity to even develop friendships and real business relationships with some of these owners, particularly if they happen to be like-minded! What does all that mean? That sense of trust and mutual respect easily builds, and grows? If we both happen to be small business owners, it often just becomes natural that we support and buy from each other!

Knows you like a friend

When we shop small, we help strengthen our sense of community by developing friendly connections. This will with no doubt make our cities and towns more resilient.

And with shopping small, there’s always that business and customer relationship that always makes us want to come back. You often get to become friends with small business owners. Just the very fact that most businesses around are small businesses says a lot about why we need to support them.

They are the lifeblood of our community! They need us just as much as we need them. Their friendly relationship with us would allow them to know what we need, like, and want…. This is obviously gonna help them do their best in giving us the quality products and services we desire!

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