You have probably heard about Small Business Week? This year SBW will be from April 30 - May 6.
Small businesses power our local economies and bring our communities together. In addition, small and local consumption might also impact your personal well-being.
Various research studies around giving and prosocial spending (spending on other people) show that people feel happier when they know how their money impacts others, especially if the impact is high. Therefore, by spending your dollars at local establishments, markets or venues, you have the chance to experience this first hand. More specifically, researchers in 2013 found that supporting others is most likely to lead to happiness when people are well aware that they have supported another person in a meaningful way, this applies to charity giving and shopping as well. (Aknin, et, al. 2013)
In a 2011 study published in the Journal of Happiness Studies, researchers also found that the effects of happy spending experiences led people to become more generous in their giving and spending, creating a positive feedback loop between shopping small/local and happiness.
So here are our 5 suggestions to make the most out of Mother's Day and Small Business Week for you and your community:
- Make an effort to dedicate part of your gift budget to small businesses purchases.
- Identify your favorite independently owned spots in your community. Search popular local restaurants, coffee shops, music venues or yoga studios in your community that are independently owned or are part of local franchises. Find out if they offer gift cards or gift memberships.
- Use apps such as Trip.com , Tripadvisor.com , Yelp.com or ask your friends for ideas. In fact, research has found that the best recommendations come from people who have done something similar.
- Identify who on your gift list would most appreciate a gift from a local merchant.
- If time is not on your side, find out if you can buy from local establishments online.
And don't forget to have fun shopping local, seeing the impact and creating a loop of happier spending in your community!