Canadians Urged to Support Small Businesses: Majority Express Love for Local Shops

by Staff

A recent report by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) in partnership with Scotiabank sheds light on the love Canadians have for small businesses in their communities. Over 9 in 10 Canadians express their affection for these establishments, yet only 13% predominantly shop at them, opting for big multinational retailers instead.

The report, titled Small Business, Big Impact: Small Retailers’ Local Contributions, shows that 78% of small retailers are witnessing revenue and customer losses to large businesses. These statistics serve as a wake-up call for consumers to reconsider their shopping habits.

“Despite the many contributions that small businesses make to their communities, most consumers don’t support them on a daily basis even though they recognize the importance of shopping local. There are many misconceptions among consumers, including that small retailers and multinational businesses contribute to local economies equally. In fact, when you shop at a small, independent retailer, six times more of that money stays in your local economy than when you shop at a large multinational retailer,” said Taylor Matchett, CFIB’s senior research analyst and co-author of the report.

The report reveals that small retailers are not only vital for the local economy but also actively engage with their communities. Nearly all small retailers (97%) said they contribute in various ways, including donating to charities, sponsoring local events, and providing job opportunities for youth.

To encourage Canadians to shop local, CFIB has reintroduced its #SmallBusinessEveryDay Big Thank You Contest, which runs until October 30. Small business supporters can enter the weekly draw by visiting and leaving a thank-you note to their favorite small Canadian business. Winners receive a $2,500 cash prize sponsored by Interac Corp., a one-year CFIB membership, and a Big Thank You box filled with small business products from across the country.

“Even a small change in spending habits will have a positive impact on local economies. Small businesses are the cornerstones of our communities. They hire and train the next generation of leaders, offer unique products and personalized services, and foster a strong sense of community,” said Emily Boston, a Policy Analyst at CFIB and the co-author of the report. “We encourage everyone to prioritize shopping local not just during Small Business Week, but throughout the whole year as well.”

For more information on the Big Thank You Contest and how to support small businesses, check out Business owners can also download CFIB’s new digital toolkit to promote local shopping.

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