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  • Writer's pictureDr. Taylor Ferguson

The Importance of Shopping Small

Updated: May 23, 2020

They say March can come in like a lion… but I don’t think anyone saw this coming, or April, or May! COVID-19, Coronavirus, the Pandemic, however you refer to it, the effect has been unprecedented. First and foremost, I hope that you and your families have fared well through these difficult days and that you, and your loved ones continue to stay healthy and safe.

This has certainly been, and remains to be, a challenging time for all of us. No matter where you reside in the country, the effect of the Coronavirus, while varied, was and is dramatic for all. I continue to learn of new ways it has affected businesses, individuals, and industries every day.

In Denver, one of the hardest-hit industries was healthcare. Those on the frontlines have been separated from their families, working extremely long hours, and at the greatest risk of contracting the virus. Those in private healthcare were forced to close their doors or shift to telemedicine, myself included. Others hard-hit include those in the service industry who were forced to close first and have yet to re-open, other than for takeout. Gyms and fitness centers were the second to close, and have yet to reopen fully or at all. Some businesses were able to pivot by developing other ways to cover their overhead: telemedicine, takeout orders, pantry sales, online programming, equipment rentals, etc. However, the question still remains, will these efforts be enough to support them for now and see them through to the other side? While I cannot speak for each individual clinic owner, restaurant owner, service industry owner, or gym owner, for some it clearly won’t be enough. As a result of the Coronavirus Pandemic, many will be forced to close their doors for good.

As a consumer, you are inundated with choices with regard to where to place your business. Whether it be for a product, a service, or a meal, you can choose to support a small local business or a larger company. Small businesses tend to operate on smaller margins, which is why any hit to their revenue is potentially detrimental. Had more people chosen to shop small prior to the pandemic, more small businesses may have been able to survive this economic downturn.

Going forward, as the world starts to return to normal and your health and safety are no longer in jeopardy, I ask that you consider supporting small business owners within your local community. By shopping small you are helping individuals fulfill their dreams and/or carry on a legacy. Buying products locally will support your local community which, in turn, will support other small businesses and will create local jobs. According to the Small Business Economic Impact Study from 2018 (American Express), “an average two-thirds of every dollar ($0.67) spent at small businesses in the U.S. stays in the local community”. “Further, every dollar spent at small businesses creates an additional 50 cents in local business activity as a result of the employee spending and businesses purchasing local goods and services.”

So when filling your prescriptions, consider a locally run pharmacy. Shop for groceries at your small neighborhood store. Buy directly from the breweries, distilleries, wineries, and local liquor stores. Support local coffee shops, ice cream shops, and other such specialty shops.

Support local gyms, such as the ones I operate in conjunction with, CrossFit Jai and Blunt Force Training. Support the small business owners offering services - massage, personal grooming, dog grooming, house cleaning, etc. Enjoy meals from local restaurants or personal chefs. And of course, enjoy chiropractic care from your local, caring chiropractor! Small businesses deserve your consideration and support day in and day out, not just one November Saturday each year. Make shopping small a habit; the benefits are so much larger!


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