The looming government shutdown has already had a terrible impact on the businesses inside the beltway. Just like last year, local businesses have seen a big dip in sales in the last week, as folks are conserving their spending in the event that they will not be paid for hours they work this week and next or that they aren’t going to be working at all. As I talk to my neighboring businesses, we all have the same concern – the shutdown will have a huge impact on our sales and thus our ability to schedule our staff and pay our bills.
I realize that no one needs more yarn in their house, so I imagine most of you will start working on those sizable stashes this week, should you be impacted by the government. For everyone else who isn’t impacted (and even those who are), I would encourage you to spend your money locally. If you need milk and toilet paper, consider the locally owned convenience store on King St. You can grab local produce, bread, milk and eggs from places like Grape and Bean Rosemont. Need shampoo or toothpaste? Might be time to check out the amazing stuff that Bellacara sells. Make every attempt to spend your dollars with a local business, because we are hit the hardest but also have the biggest potential to help the economy. Check out these stats from Shop Local Alexandria:
Top 10 Reasons for Shopping Locally
- Keep more dollars in the local economy.
For every $100 spent in a local store, $68 will stay in the community. But spend $100 at a chain store and only $43 stays in the community.
- Create more local jobs.
That extra money is spent on hiring more people in the community, who buy their own products and services and pay taxes.
- Attract tourism and visitors.
It’s old Town’s independently owned businesses that make it a unique destination for tourists and residents of the Washington, D.C. area.
- Get better service.
Local businesses take more time to get to know you and the products they’re selling.
- Help local causes.
Studies have shown that local businesses provide 350% more support to community causes than national chains.
- Enjoy a diverse range of product choices.
Small businesses choose products based on what their customers love and need — not a national sales plan.
- Help the environment.
By shopping in a central business district, you discourage sprawl. Plus, purchases by independent businesses typically require less transportation. And our easy Metro access and King Street Trolleys reduce congestion and pollution.
- Invest in the community.
Local businesses are owned by people who live here, work here, and are more invested in our future.
- Invest in entrepreneurship.
Local entrepreneurs work hard to grow their businesses. As they expand, they create more wealth for the local economy.
- Put your taxes to good use.
Shopping in old Town requires less public infrastructure, less maintenance and more money available to beautify our community. Also, spending locally instead of online ensures that your sales taxes are reinvested right here in Alexandria.