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The value of shopping locally

The value of shopping locally

We all know that we should shop locally, everyone is telling us about the importance of it but in this ever-changing world – it isn’t always easy to wander down to your local high street and have a mooch in the hope that you can pick up what you need.  Now, don’t get me wrong…I absolutely love to do just that.  I love it when I have the time to spend going in and out of shops and browsing, occasionally finding a little gem of an item but it’s the experience that I truly love and knowing that you’re supporting local businesses is the cherry on the cake.

In my reality though – that is a once in a year event.  I have three young children and spend most of my life ferrying them to friends or school or clubs.  My husband and I run a busy company and we’ve just spent the last year setting up Love Where You Live.  My life, like a lot of other people’s lives is busy and time for myself is most definitely a luxury.  BUT – I passionately knew that there had to be a way to support local but why is it so important to me?  Well, there’s the obviously reason – as a local business owner, I know what it means when your local community gets on board with your vision and supports you…it can (especially in a coronavirus riddled world) be a lifesaver but supporting local does so much more so here are my reasons for why we should all do it more and the reasons that ultimately led to me taking the plunge and launching into the world of local retail.  Here are my top five reasons for wanting to shop locally:

Sustainability

So, recently, Amazon released their carbon footprint figures for the first time after pressure from employees and investors and it showed that it rose by 15% last year.  They emitted 51.17 million metric tons of carbon dioxide over the course of the year which is the equivalent of running 13 coal-burning power stations for a year…and these figures obviously don’t take into account the surge in Amazon sales when the coronavirus pandemic hit. So, here’s my question:  Why are we ordering products from London or Cardiff or Edinburgh or even worse, from abroad when actually, much of it can be found right here on our doorstep in Worcestershire.  The answer is easy.  Because we’re busy.  For example, needed to buy some wellies for my daughter recently. I needed to buy them online because time was short.  After 30 minutes of really trying to buy some in her size (without Disney characters on them!) I gave up and resorted to Amazon.  They were found and ordered within 3 minutes and arrived two days later coming all the way from London.  Now, I KNOW that there is a local seller out there in Worcestershire selling a range of wellies but because they don’t have a marketing budget or the necessary SEO skills, I couldn’t find them online.  And that’s just one of the problems that Love Where You Live is trying to solve…we want you to be able to find wellies (and everything else!) easily and in one place safe in the knowledge that’s it coming from right here in Worcestershire.

A sense of community

I don’t know about you, but one thing lockdown highlighted for me was the importance of being part of a community.  Everyone rallied around and it was an unexpected high point nestled in amongst the lows.  If you support local, you’ll already be aware of that great feeling of knowing that you’ve helped a local jewellery maker to send their child to football or gymnastics or that your purchase has encouraged them to keep doing what they love.  Behind every local vendor is a real person who’s gone out on a limb to set up their own company doing something they love.  Most of the vendors I speak to try to source local products and materials for items they’re selling.

You’re helping to create jobs… right here in Worcestershire. 

I think we can all agree that Amazon has a place (wellies 🙄) but by supporting local, we can help a local company to employ a local person.  I’m sure Jeff Bezos does a lot of good with his wealth but together, the Love Where You Live community can make a positive and profound change in our local environment, supporting people, business and the environment.

This is an oldie but a goodie that I’m stealing…did you know that research shows for every £10 you spend with a local retailer, an additional £50 goes back into our local economy.  That money is circulated locally and goes back to local restaurants, pubs and other retailers, helping our local communities to thrive.

Looking for a gift? 

This is a big problem for me – I’m constantly looking for inspiration and actually, we have some incredibly talented retailers right on our doorstep.  From a local gin/rum/vodka/cider gift pack for your mum to toys for kids to gifts for your friend who’s just had a baby – you can find fantastic products right here in Worcestershire.  Actually, I’ve started to lean towards an experience over a gift for close family and friends…something that we can do together and again, we really do have it all, right here on our door step – from spa days to make your own gin experiences…Love Where You Live exists to help you find your perfect gift!

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