Even though goods and services from global companies can be purchased at the click of a “Buy Now!” button, doing business in your own community can benefit you in many ways. Here are seven of them:
- You get personal attention. With a small local business, you have a better chance of employees getting to know you and your preferences. You’ll deal directly with a salesperson, perhaps even the owner, and a meaningful relationship can then develop.
- There’s comfort in closeness. Whether you’re ordering flowers for a wedding, drapes for the den, or packaging for your new line of gluten-free brownies, there’s a definite degree of comfort working with a manufacturer who’s nearby. Your product deliveries won’t be stuck on crowded highways or stymied by airport shutdowns during a winter storm. Personal visits to local companies are convenient and – even better – always welcome.
- Your business matters to someone. It’s easy to get information about your order when you work with a small local business. You can deal directly with an account representative who knows you and always acts on your behalf. Try doing that with a national or international company. You’ll be stuck on hold or forced to conduct a frustrating and impersonal online chat with a stranger.
- Small businesses are more flexible. There’s no red tape in a small business. It’s pretty straightforward to get customization of your order or make adjustments to things like quantities and shipping instructions. And if you need a partial shipment a day or two early, it’s much easier with a local manufacturer. Large companies can’t react quickly.
- It’s easier for small businesses to innovate. Small manufacturers who control all of their processes in-house have a unique ability: innovation. They know what can be done and are willing to “push envelopes” and reach for new heights. This capability is partly due to the fact that they employ experts in all facets of their production process. Getting a team together to brainstorm about your next job is easy with a local company.
- You get faster service. If all of the creative and production processes are contained under one roof, your order can be manufactured much more quickly than if you sourced it outside of your region, where it would need to travel further, or with a specialist who might have the manufacturing capacity but lack the creative or finishing skills.
- Your community benefits economically. Though not well known, a feature called the “Local Multiplier Effect” (LME) is an important part of our economy. It refers to how many dollars are circulated within a local economy before leaving through the purchase of “imports,” which are products or services from outside of a region. Economist John Maynard Keynes coined this term in 1836. It refers to the economic fact that money spent within a community has a multiplier effect within the same community. Picture local companies spending their earned dollars on other local products. Thriving communities have higher LMEs, and their economy is strong.
Customers have shared with us that they appreciate SunDance for being an active, local-owned business. We pride ourselves on building productive partnerships here in the Orlando area, and recognize that at the end of the day, people do business with people. So from our people to yours, have a joyous holiday season, and may your businesses, and local economies, thrive in the New Year.