Go Local this Holiday Shopping Season

Use Your Dollars to ‘Vote’ for Local Businesses when Holiday Shopping

Use your SNBT Debit Card to shop safelyThe Stephenson National Bank & Trust (SNBT) is encouraging consumers to Go Local this holiday season by shopping at local small businesses. The shopping season gives consumers an opportunity to voice their values and support their communities. Every dollar you spend locally is another ‘vote’ in favor of community businesses and has more impact than you may realize. When you buy from local gift shops, clothing stores, or hardware stores, you are investing in those small businesses and the health of your community.

SNBT explains the circle of our local economy and how every individual can do their part to ensure it continues to thrive. It starts when a person spends their money at local shops such as grocers, hardware stores, or repair garages. In turn, those business owners and their employees patronize other independent restaurants, clothing shops, and hair salons. The circle continues to help our communities prosper, eventually funding more city services through sales taxes.

For every $100 spent at an independent business - $68 returns to the local community versus $43 when spent at a national chain store. Therefore, together the approximately 43,000 households in Marinette, Menominee, and Oconto Counties could circulate almost $3 million dollars throughout the local economies of our communities (according to the Civic Economics Andersonville Study of Retail Economics, and based on the 2010 U.S. Census).

When you buy a holiday gift from local stores, you benefit, too. Oftentimes, when you walk into a Main Street shop, there's a good chance you'll spot a handmade, unique, or cool gift that won't be on the shelves of the mega stores. Plus, you have the opportunity to chat and catch up on local happenings with store staff and fellow shoppers.

Shopping locally and banking locally go hand-in-hand. Those dollars can make an even greater hometown investment when they are deposited within a community bank. The money deposited in a community bank is reinvested in the form of loans to local residents or small business owners. Homeowners hire local contractors, who purchase supplies from local lumber yards, and small business owners buy equipment from local dealers/suppliers. 

A couple outside by their car in winter.Community banks, are huge advocates of local, small businesses. You may not have realized it, but community banks are small businesses also – we only thrive when our customers and communities do the same. This close-knit relationship allows SNBT to understand the needs and challenges facing small businesses and be better poised to drive growth and economic prosperity in our communities. During the holiday season, consumers have the same power. We encourage everyone to visit local businesses and see what products and services they have to offer.

When consumers make a conscious decision to shop locally, they are also more likely to think about their shopping behavior in general and to plan their purchases carefully. Shop with a plan and a list, and most importantly, keep your budget in mind, because a 'great deal' is not so good if it takes six months to pay off.