Around this time of the year, we start hearing a lot about Christmas shopping, and especially about the importance of doing so locally. The Chamber of Commerce initiates the “Shop Local” campaign and tries to get everybody on board in the hopes of driving traffic to our community gift shops. Why? Because every year, it gets harder and harder for these gift shops to survive. The Holiday Season is where they can make a big chunk of their yearly income, so why not help them?
While shopping at brick and mortar stores is still a popular option, this year, according to a recent survey performed by Rakuten.ca, a whooping 85% of Canadians will choose to spend either all their money, or part of their money, online. As if it wasn’t enough that small retailers have to contend with big box stores, each year, they lose more and more sales to those same big box stores’ online market.
But they don’t have to! If you’re like me and hate the Christmas Crowds, you can choose to shop online AND locally. There are plenty of Cornwall stores that offer options to cybershop, either by using their shopping cart directly, or by viewing their online catalog, and then calling them to order.
I know, I know, you’re gonna argue that the prices are higher. Well, let’s see… Out of curiosity, I went on Mrs B’s website (mrsbsgifts.getpayd.com) and looked for Yankee candles. I like the Kitchen Spice one, so I selected it and added it to my cart. $31.95 for a 22oz jar, with free pickup or $10 shipped to my door. I then went on amazon.ca and looked for the same candle. $34.93 and free shipping if you have a prime membership, or $8.91 otherwise. See? The local option is actually CHEAPER!
I understand that as a consumer, it’s hard to justify purchasing something in a small store for double the price found elsewhere, but we have to ask ourselves: would we rather pay a bit more and help a small business owner or pay less and support a massive corporation? There is no right or wrong answer here, big corporations are, after all, major employers around here and if you are a middle class average family, like mine, the bottom dollar does matters.
So I’m not going to lecture you about where you spend your money. No. Only YOU know what’s best for you. But I will suggest researching and comparing the local options and, If they are equal or slightly higher, perhaps invest at least some dollars locally?
Want to help? Wear our Shop Local pride! Only $25. Send and email to [email protected] to order and $5 from each sale will be donated to Maison Baldwin House.