The whole month of July is all about celebrating Independent Retailers. National Independent Retailer Month is used to recognize independent retailers that support local economies.
In the US, there are about 143,853 retailers selling a wide variety of products. From groceries and furniture to clothing and footwear to books and art supplies and everything in between.
The number of small specialty retail businesses in the US has grown at an average of 0.9% per year over the five years between 2017 and 2022. In fact, opening a store is a popular way to start a business thanks to its simple business model.
So, if you are an aspiring entrepreneur, you can open a store in person or online without needing a lot of capital. In addition to bringing much-needed products to the local market, independent retailers create vibrant local interactions that increase the reach and engagement of the local community.
National Independent Shopping Month in July 2022
The celebration aims to gain support for smaller retailers and enable them to compete on a level playing field. It means supporting convenience stores, mom-and-pop stores and other independent retailers to grow and stay resilient.
Small retail businesses are considered the backbone of the US economy, but inflation and gas price increases continue to dampen their growth following the Covid recovery. About 51% of local retailers are currently concerned that skyrocketing inflation could force them to close their businesses, while only 36% of retailers have fully recovered and are generating the same monthly income as before COVID.
READ MORE: Make the Most of Independent Retailer Month
In addition, a recent rent report shows that most small businesses in the US (52%) have experienced rent increases in the past six months, up 6% from 46% in April. Among other inflationary trends, higher rents increase rent arrears. Of that 52% majority, 18% say their rent has increased by 10% to 20%, and another 14% say it is more than 20% higher than six months ago.
Retail sales in the first quarter of 2022 were $959.2 billion, up from $887.0 billion recorded in the first quarter of 2021. They are $52.1 billion lower than the $1011.3 billion recorded in the fourth quarter of 2021.
Why should you support small retailers?
Local small retailers provide great value to the local community, below are some of their benefits:
Stimulating the local economy: It is estimated that a dollar spent at an independent retailer is usually spent six to 15 times in the community before going out of town. Just $1 can create $5 to $14 worth of value in the immediate area. In addition, small retail businesses are leading local employers who hire people from the immediate area, the community gets the taxes which keeps the money within the community and keeps the local economy bustling.
Local shopping is good for the environment: In addition to local shops that employ local people, they have relatively less impact on the environment when it comes to car or public transport, reducing CO2 emissions. In addition, being located in the city, they are more accessible and within walking distance for everyone, while most of their products are sourced locally.
They provide a better shopping experience: unlike multinational retailers, local retailers are a source of creativity and originality. Small businesses tend to be customer oriented and understand the needs of their community while offering unique products or services that can be customized and personalized according to customer needs.
Support local entrepreneurship: A local retail business is run by ordinary people, often our friends, family, neighbors or acquaintances. These entrepreneurs have made every effort to build a thriving business and so we owe it to them to make their dreams come true.
Some ideas for making the most of National Independent Retailer Month
If you’re an Independent Retailer, you can access resources available on the Independent Retailer’s Month website, including logos, posters, and postcards designed to celebrate the month of July. National Independent Retailer Month. You can also step up your marketing game through discounts, gift cards, special offers, social media to share your company’s story, and host events with other local retailers.
Ways to celebrate National Independent Retail Month:Don’t get caught up in just offering discounts. Remember this month is to celebrate independent retailers, try to show off your unique offering, your backstory and why customers should buy from you. Focus on providing your customers with unique experiences they can’t get anywhere else Use the opportunity to further engage with your customers by offering them sign up for your email marketing to make future offers available to them or the ability to send your monthly newsletter to keep conversations going and grow your email list.
If you are a customer, you can go to your city’s shopping district and buy from them. You can also support your local retailers by helping to organize shopping walks in your community to encourage local shopping.
If you’d like to take advantage of the many days in the calendar celebrating different occasions, here’s the full list for 2022.
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