When you are a consumer living within a capitalist society, you vote with your dollars as to which businesses stay and which ones go. At the same time, you are voting for which business practices stick around, encouraging or discouraging certain ones through your support.
Sadly, most people do not remain aware of the power each dollar has. They have overwhelmingly thrown support behind big-box retailers and other large chain stores, driven by supposedly low prices and a consistent familiarity.
In the past few years, people have seen the effects big chains can have on a community, and they have been pushing back against these effects by supporting local businesses like a Las Vegas printer ink supplier instead. Doing so gains you and your community critical benefits because only a local business owner can offer the following things:
The biggest problem with large corporate organizations is that they lose sight of how their practices affect communities.
For instance, consider a small hardware store that wants to buy up an adjacent wooded lot next to their shop to expand parking. If community members say that the forest here is important to the ecosystem or to their image of the community, the shop owner may face consequences if they decide to ignore these pleas.
If the same situation were the case with a hardware chain, they can mow down the woods without a second thought. Sure, some people in the community may stop buying there, but with hundreds of other stores across the country they can absorb the costs. In this way, small business owners are forced to listen to the community while bigger chains can ignore them.
Cost externalization is an economic term for when a business makes someone else pay for something they otherwise would have to handle on their own.
Labor issues provide the most important example. Many large retail chains have caught flak for underpaying their workers and encouraging workers to subsidize their own wages through government assistance programs. This shovels the burden of paying a fair income onto taxpayers, meaning those “low prices” come with hidden costs.
Small business owners are much less apt to make decisions like this since they tend to work more closely with their employees and develop relationships with them. Instead of hiring dozens of incompetent people for four-hour shifts, they can hire a few skilled laborers they respect and have them stick around for years, providing better overall value to the owner and better service to patrons.
Money that goes to big businesses gets siphoned to their headquarters and distributed as they see fit. Even with operating costs, the big guys will use national vendors over local suppliers.
By contrast, local business owners spend 68 cents for every dollar they earn within their own community. They can help other local businesses flourish, preserving the unique nature of a community’s economy. More of their taxes also go to municipal services, helping improve the community as a whole.
Only a local business can act responsibly, care about their community, offer talented workers the compensation they deserve and improve their own surroundings as we have described above. So, when your printers need an ink recharge or repairs, think of us small guys first.
You can learn more about who we are and how we help the community by reading our About Us page.