Independent We Stand reminds us to "Go Local" for Valentine's Day

Guest blog post from Sarah McIntosh of Independent We Stand:

Independent We Stand is a movement of locally-owned businesses and people across the country dedicated to educating their communities about the importance and strong economic benefits of buying  local. We promote shopping local year round, but we also like to have some fun with certain retail holidays.

Valentine’s Day is the second largest gift-giving holiday of the year, and a great opportunity to give back to your community. The National Retail Federation projects that the average shopper will spend $130.97 on gifts for their loved ones this Valentine’s Day, reaching a total of $18.6 billion nationwide.

Those are some impressive numbers! Now we’re not suggesting that you run out and spend your entire paycheck on gifts you can’t afford. What we are asking is that when you do plan on spending your hard-earned money, you make a conscious effort to support the locally owned independent businesses in your community. These local businesses continually pump money back into your local economy by way of taxes, payroll and donations to local charities. Civic Economics and the American Booksellers Association found that every dollar you spend at an independent local business creates up to three and a half times more local economic benefit than dollars spent at a chain.

We created a special Valentine’s Day Impact Calculator that shows how much money would be directly returned to your local community if every family in your area spent $100 of their Valentine’s Day budget at locally owned independent businesses. By shifting just a portion of your spending, you can help create more jobs and a stronger economy.

So this year, when you’re purchasing presents for your sweetheart, consider shopping at locally owned florists, card shops, chocolate shops, gift shops, etc. (find one with our local business search). You get the picture, right? Don’t be a loser this Valentine’s Day – buy local!

We created these posters to remind consumers to show their communities some love this Valentine’s Day. Click here to download the posters for free and help spread the “buy local” love!

For more Valentine's Day fun, check out our list of Valentine's Events to Celebrate your Local Love, and our 5 Ways to Go Local for Valentine's Day.