Shopping with independent shops is hands down the best way to shop. It is a way better shopping experience for a whole host of reasons.
Plus it is so important. The UK economy needs us all to choose independent shops. Online or on the high street.
I have 10 reasons why we should all Shop Independent this Christmas…and beyond. Small shops aren’t just for Christmas!
This year has been so hard for so many people. The small retailers have really suffered, many hanging on with the hope Christmas will be good for them and keep them alive for us all to continue to enjoy.
Make the pledge #ipledgeindiechristmas:
Shop Small this Christmas is so important:
Now more than ever we need to think twice about who we hand our money to. Shopping with independents means we directly support the UK economy. It keeps the shop in business and so retains and creates jobs. Small shop owners buy from other small businesses. Shop owners pay tax in the UK. I could go on. The economic reasons are endless.
If you buy from a big online retailer or marketplace, who knows where your money goes or where they pay their tax. I know the pocket I would like my money to go into.
Our UK economy needs us to think twice about where we spend our money.
That bargain you have just spotted on a massive marketplace, may seem like a better deal. But saving a pound and the UK economy getting none of it, is a mad way to shop.
I have yet to shop with an independent shop (and I shop with a lot) that isn’t brilliant. I do most of my shopping online and always use independents. They have a uniqueness and knowledge that makes shopping with them a much more pleasurable experience. Their knowledge of what they sell is always at expert levels.
More often than not, the person serving you and packing your order, is the owner. Or at the very least one of a very few employees. They ensure each shopper gets the individual service and care they deserve. Carefully handled and packaged with care. A personal service.
As the saying goes
When you buy from a small business, an actual person does a happy dance.
When I ran my online shop, I used to read out every name on the orders and say a thank you, as I was carefully picking and wrapping their order ready to go out to them.
To every small business owner, every order is appreciated. No matter how small.
Three key traits of an independent shop. Quite often a little bit of madness thrown in too 🙂 and definitely lots of enthusiasm and love.
I love seeing how individual each shop is. Even online where it is not the same level of contact, you can still see the passion and personality shine through.
Just seeing that makes shopping with them a pleasure.
I am not saying all big shops don’t have ethics, but a huge number of them don’t. It scares me when I see documentaries about the fashion industry, for instance. Or how some of the massive market places treat their workers.
Independent shops have ethics from lots of angles. Fair trade, sustainability, environmental impact, economic effect of their actions, conscious employers, support other small businesses etc etc.
Every day they strive to do the right thing, whilst still giving the shopper what they want and need, and make a living which keeps them in the business of serving.
What is the saying “buy cheap buy twice”. Not only is that a waste of money but it supports a throw away culture, wasting resources and keeping a world without ethics going.
The other thing I can never get my head around. Why buy 20 cheap versions of something from China on a market place, because they are cheap. When actually you only needed one. Buy one from a decent independent shop, it will last longer, is not wasting resources and you will appreciate and enjoy your purchase so much more.
Stop bargain hunting, it really is such a bad way to shop. Bargain hunting is ruining this world. Stop it now! Instead find exactly what you need, pay a price the product deserves and become a shopper with ethics.
Independent shops include in their shops the best products they can find for their customers needs and wants. They have done the hard work of sourcing the best suppliers and products. Or if they make or manufacture themselves, they have created the best range they can for their shopper.
They have a good range, based on their knowledge and expertise, of products that will be right for their customer.
They have seen the products and therefore selected and curated what is right for us. Often with the big guys online, they have never even seen what they sell or frankly care as long as the money keeps coming in.
Independent shops are creative and innovative. Many independent shop owners design and create their own products. Many are creative and innovative with the experience they offer, the communications they do or the product variety they sell.
I love seeing the creative and innovative products and experiences that an independent shop is bringing into the world continually.
The shops uniqueness, personality, range selection, creativity, innovation, expertise, passion and enthusiasm, all come together to give us the variety and choice we all need. We are individuals, we all have different needs and wants. We all like and appreciate different things. The independent shops cater to this, they get to know you and ensure they give you the variety and choice we all desire.
For all the reasons already mentioned, shopping at independents, whether online or on the high street, are a joy to shop with.
I for one love shopping with them and people tell me all the time they do too. More and more people are realising the importance of shopping independent.
Shop independent this Christmas. Shop small this Christmas. Lets keep these amazing shops alive for us all to enjoy.
Love Our Shops UK is here to help you hunt out the independent shops online. My shopping directory, blog posts and social media helps you find them. They can be a little tricky to find when you have all the big marketplaces and shops hogging the first few pages of Google.
I know whose pockets my money is going in. It certainly isn’t in those who don’t deserve it, already have more money than I can even imagine, yet they take a lot more out of the UK than they contribute, and who don’t even understand what ethics are.
Every purchase I make adds to this dream. Every purchase you make, can too.
Imagine how amazing it would be if this dream came true.
Shop Small this Christmas and lets keep independent shops alive for them to continue to make this world a better place.
Christmas here we come 🙂
At the time of writing, all shops are members of my shopping directory Love Our Shops UK. All opinions in this blog post are mine.
Though I mention lots of shops here, you must form your own opinion as to whether the shop and their products are for you. Clicking on a shop or product link will send you to their website, from there you are covered by their terms and conditions.