Grand Junction is home to many innovative and unique businesses recognized for their outstanding achievements in their industries. Having a community of businesses all striving to be unique, community-oriented, innovative, and resourceful results in a healthy commerce climate and well-served, happy customers. The Grand Junction Chamber recognizes the importance of small, local businesses and we continue to be an ambassador for the shop local season and encourage residents to support our local, small businesses.
Small businesses add flavor to our area and there is a sense of adventure when you explore a small business. You never know what treasures you’ll uncover or what scrumptiousness awaits. Sadly, that’s also why a lot of people choose to patronize chains. With chains, they know exactly what they’ll get and there’s a lot of comfort in the known.
But comfort does come at a price and that price could be our community.
“Small business” can mean a lot of things and the Small Business Association defines a small business as any business employing less than 500 people with revenue under $7.5 million. Small Business Saturday as launched by American Express is likely using this definition and while Small Business Saturday is a good thing, it’s just not enough.
Large employers and chains are vital to our area, but this holiday season, and all year round, we’re asking you to support small business to help ensure they’re around in the coming years. The Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce is committed to taking Small Business Saturday one step further and supporting Small Business Season. We are working to shift the culture in our area from a simple “one and done” day of shopping to a broader way of supporting our small businesses all through the holiday season and beyond.
This year, and all subsequent ones, let’s celebrate a Small Business Season.
With employee shortages, supply chain and delivery issues, and now the added burden of increased costs of materials, we know that small businesses could really start to struggle in the coming months.
With the biggest inflation surge in over 40 years, the price might be a concern for people shopping this holiday. Dollars won’t go as far. Therefore, it’s going to take a lot of smart marketing to entice shoppers to buy local or small, especially because those businesses don’t have the large loss leaders that the big box stores run to get customers in the door.
American Express, Amazon, and other large companies have done a commendable job of bringing attention to the vulnerability of small businesses but it is up to us and our entire community to help continue these efforts and evolve them into a season-long, and even better, a year-long awareness of how shopping small can impact our community.
We often hear sentiments that say “any amount helps”. Customers may wonder if that is true. Can ten dollars spent at a local store really have that large of an impact on the community? What’s the difference between buying something on Amazon or a big box store, rather than a local one?
The impact is sizable. It’s estimated that over $9.3 billion would be returned to our US economy if every family spent just $10 a month at a local business. That’s not even one meal’s worth of spending a month! What a tremendous impact we could have if everyone could commit to that.
It’s all about the Hamiltons. And we’re not suggesting additional spending – we’re simply advising willing supporters to switch the $10 a month currently spent elsewhere to $10 with local businesses. $10 dollars! That’s it and that small spend can have a huge impact.
Time after time, the continuous support our local community members provide to our Grand Valley businesses is astounding. We understand the ease of ordering goods online and the simplicity of shopping at large corporations, but the value of supporting and shopping local is more than ease – it’s our livelihood.