The Importance of Local Businesses
10th August 2020
In the modern world, we have the ability to purchase products and services from anywhere around the world at the click of the button. Many businesses out there are national or international; acquiring products or services from around the globe and selling to anywhere around the globe creating a long chain from producer to consumer. But what happens when a link in the chain breaks?
Large businesses with many links in their chain lack the flexibility to adapt if the chain becomes unstable or breaks. When that happens it is often the people at the end of the chain that suffer the most. This can be anything from disappointment about not receiving the latest fashions to not being able to get enough food to put on the table (or a lack of toilet roll!).
Things change all the time; we never know what is around the corner. It is impossible to prepare for every eventuality and attempting to prepare for just a few could drive a person insane. The answer is flexibility. As human beings we have the innate ability to adjust to different situations. Local businesses reflect this natural ability. By keeping everything local, there are fewer moving parts, spread over a smaller area, which allows changes to the business to reflect changes in both supply and demand within a smaller time frame.
Community is important to everyone. It gives us a sense of belonging. We can all be part of multiple communities; whether that’s the street we live on, our place of work, the gym we work out at, our favourite coffee shop, the book club we attend, and so on.
One of the wonderful things about Local Businesses is the ability to build a stronger community. It creates a sense of connection between people in a smaller area leading to better relationships. I’m sure you are aware of the sense of frustration and disconnection of speaking to someone in a call centre in another part of the world. This is not a reflection on the kind of service they may be offering but the knowledge that each time you phone you have to start from scratch with a different person regardless of how long you have been using that company’s services. This is a completely different experience to calling or visiting a local company who will cultivate a positive relationship from both sides and start to integrate you into their unique community.
Local Businesses Online
One of the most common ways that people search for a service or product they require is by going on Google and searching for it. I’m sure you do it too! And how often do you add your town, county or ‘near me’ to that search to ensure that the product or service is local? If you don’t add a location, Google will still prioritise results on your current location (providing you have allowed Google to access that info from your device). This is why it is so important for local businesses to not only have a quality website but also to ensure it is optimised for local SEO. You may have the most amazing business in the world but unless search engines understand exactly what you do and think your website is as amazing as your business, they won’t put you in front of the people that matter.
The World Wide Web is just that - ‘world wide’ but it is an amazing tool if used correctly to help people find each other and build strong local communities for a better way of living.