Small Business Isn't So Small

How Keeping Your Money In Amarillo
Benefits Us All As A Community

Supporting local business is crucial to the growth and expansion of our city. If we want our community to continue to develop, we have to offer something that other communities don’t. Our local business scene is something that’s unique to our city for travelers, and provides quality and convenience for the people that live here.

Not to mention the economic benefits of shopping locally. Local shopping is crucial to the continued growth of our community, because the success of local businesses attracts and encourages other entrepreneurs to start local businesses, which leads to more jobs and revenue re-circulating throughout our community.

Doing the Math

The math for buying close to home is compelling—for every $100 spent at a locally-owned business, $48 stays and is recirculated in Amarillo. Compare that to the same $100 spent at a franchise or big chain, where only $14 remains in our local economy. And not to mention when you shop online, $0 benefit our city. Recent research from Civic Economics ( indicates that local eateries return nearly 79 percent of revenues to the community, compared to just over 30 percent for chain restaurants. “When profits stay local, it increases the community’s wealth, tax revenue and standard of living,” Sue Lynn Sasser, PhD and professor of economics at the University of Central Oklahoma says.

“Small businesses and local businesses are still the backbone of our economy,” Sasser adds. “They are local people serving local people and are generally committed to staying there, raising their families. After all, most businesses started out as a small, local business and earned the success of growing and expanding. It’s the American Dream.”

Here are some reasons to keep your cash close to home:

Keep Money Local: Sales taxes fund our communities and provide vital services such as police and fire protection, street repairs and trash collection. Local businesses are also more likely to shop with other local businesses, keeping money moving in our local economy even longer.

Local Investment: Local businesses are less susceptible to national downturns and more likely to work harder to stay open. Local ownership means that important decisions are made by people who live in our community and feel the impact of those decisions.

Locally-Made Product: Local business owners often sell local products, which helps preserve the community’s distinction and creates more jobs locally, as well.

Support for Nonprofits: Studies show that nonprofits receive 250% more support from small businesses than large ones.

Discover Interesting People and Places: One-of-a-kind shops and restaurants are part of what makes Amarillo a great place to live.

Personal Connection: Getting to know the store owners is a great reason to shop local. It’s their business, they are the decision-makers and they build a personal relationship with their customers.

Product Knowledge: Local business owners are well informed about their products and know what they are selling. Since they know their customers, they can offer expert advice and easily adjust their inventories to include the goods and services local people want to buy.

Diverse Product: Local stores carry inventory you might not find at national chain stores. Local business owners choose products based on what their customers want.

Cost Effective: Sometimes prices at local businesses are better because they don’t have the overhead that larger stores may have and they may be more willing to negotiate to meet your price needs.

Better Experience: Local shopping can be more convenient. It takes much less time to go to a local boutique as opposed to looking for parking at the mall and fighting the crowds.

Better Service: Local business owners do what they do because they are passionate about their products and typically take more time to get to know their customers. They’ll often go the extra mile to help you and to ensure you’re a satisfied customer.

Support Future Growth: Experts agree on the last reason—shopping locally is the best way to show pride in your city and help protect the businesses that make our city unique.

“We can’t simply say ‘Shop Locally!’ and keep our economy vibrant and healthy,” Sasser explains. “We have to take the time and spend the money to support local businesses with our presence and our dollars. You really do vote with your wallet, and shopping locally casts your vote for what kind of city you want to live in.”