I saw this image on Threads a few weeks ago (from an artist based in Alexandria, Virginia, Jennifer Allevato) and it really got me thinking about how we can lift each other up and show our support for each other this holiday season. Here are some thoughts on supporting small businesses…
How I’m Trying to Support Small Businesses This Season
Outside of trying to shop small myself, I have a Small Business Guide going live this week! All of my favorite brands to consider shopping from, all in one place.
In December, I will be highlighting a bunch of my favorite local small businesses on Instagram to encourage ‘last minute’ shopping in their stores.
Here on the blog and on Instagram, sometimes I feel like I’m a part of the problem with mainly linking to big-box retailers for gift guides and the like. Companies like LTK have been so beneficial to me to be able to monetize my content, but the problem is that most of the retailers on their platform are chain stores like Nordstrom, Target, etc.
Flagship: A New Way to Support Small Businesses
I have another blog post coming your way this week to officially ‘launch’ my Flagship shop and fully introduce you to the platform, but building this storefront is another one of the ways I’m trying to help small businesses this holiday season and beyond!
Over the last few months, I’ve been working with some of my favorite small businesses and brands that I love to get them onboarded to Flagship. In my Flagship shop, you’re able to shop all of these brands and businesses in one place with one single checkout. Your purchase supports their small business, and mine, too!
Supporting Your Favorite Creators
Aside from vowing to shop small, I actually related to the artist’s sentiments above on a deeper level. Bloggers and content creators are business owners running small businesses!
If you boil down blogging and ‘influencing,’ I’m essentially like a retail employee on the internet. It means the world to me (and honestly makes a world of a difference) when you shop through my links. For those not familiar with affiliate marketing, I’ll try to break it down… When you click on the links on my blog, I may earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you. It’s the brand or retailer’s way of thanking me for referring a sale to them.
How to Support Small Businesses for FREE
Supporting your favorite creators and small businesses doesn’t have to require a purchase. Don’t forget these small things that are actually really valuable!
- Follow them on social media. 👋🏼
- Like their posts. ♥️
- Comment something nice! 💬
- Share their posts with others. ↗️
- Tag a friend. ＠
- Leave a positive review. ⭐️
- Post a picture or give a shoutout. 🤳
- Sign up for their newsletter. 💌
A History of Local Businesses
My parents have always been small business owners so even before starting my own business(es), I’ve long been familiar with the ups and downs that come with it. One of my brothers now owns and operates his own local business in my hometown, too. I guess you can say it’s in our blood!
My dad is a veterinarian and my mom ran his practice for close to 30 years before they got divorced. In our small town, the schools were only a few blocks from my parents’ clinic, but our house was a ~10-minute drive away. From ages five to sixteen, I would spend all of the afterschool hours at their office. I’d do my homework in the back room, but also help out where I could (walking dogs, cleaning cages, filing papers, sending faxes, etc.) So I really had a front-row seat to seeing how supporting local businesses made a difference. It’s kind of bizarre how I remember this, but I vividly remember the rise of the internet and hearing my mom talk about sites like Chewy.com putting a dent in their retail sales of foods, grooming products, and medicines at their clinic.
How to Help Small and Locally-Owned Businesses
I, too, am so guilty of choosing convenience over community! When you’re short on time, ordering something on Amazon feels way more convenient than running to a local store to find the thing you need. Or ordering something from Target because you know it will be at your doorstep in two days, versus waiting a week when you buy from a small business.
But a little extra mindfulness goes a long way! A few simple shifts like shopping earlier, purchasing from a small business, or clicking a creator’s link truly make a difference, especially during the holiday season. ❤️