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8 Surprising Ways Shopping Vinyl Locally Makes a Big Difference

Buy records locally to improve your collection, and your community

There are heaps of good reasons from an amateur collector's standpoint to shop your local record stores for your next great find, not the least of which are:

  • avoid shipping costs

  • ask the experts

  • spontaneously find something else you didn't know you couldn't live without.

But beyond your own individual reasoning, shopping locally for vinyl has a less-tangible and more meaningful impact on your community.

1. Shopping local puts more money back into the economy.

According to Independent We Stand, Independent retailers return more than three times as much money per dollar of sales than chain competitors. Independent restaurants return more than two times as much money per dollar of sales than national restaurant chains.

2. When you shop local vinyl stores, you embrace what makes your community unique

You live in your community for a reason -- it has its own special musical vibe and history. Each local record shop reflects its own version of that vibe. By supporting local, you create not only the community you want to live in, but make it a destination for new residents and visitors.

3. You are investing in entrepreneurship when you buy locally

Think about it: nothing is quite so entrepreneurial as a handful of ambitious musicians starting a band. All of the local structure surrounding a local band and its "startup" -- including local vinyl shops and public radio stations -- are at the heart of the entrepreneurial spirit that makes towns and communities unique and successful.

4. Small business are the first to lend a helping hand

Did you know that? According to research from the Small Business Administration (SBA), small businesses donate almost twice as much per employee to charitable organizations as large businesses. And "corporate responsibility" is a big draw for customers -- creating a cycle of generosity for all.

5. Shopping local keeps tax dollars close to home

Local businesses generate more tax revenue per sales dollar. In addition, the tax dollars paid by such businesses can be used to benefit the community, supporting amenities and infrastructure that make your community unique and more livable.

6. Your "Shop Small" dollars spend better

For every $100 you spend at locally owned shops, $68 stays in the community. How does that compare to shopping online or big box stores? For the same $100 at a national chain, only $43 stays in the community, according the the SBA.

7. Local knowledge, niche selections

No doubt you know that the local shops have a different kind of knowledge and expertise you just can't find by Googling or surfing eBay. That expertise -- along with deep customer relationships -- means that people working in local shops listen and provide inventory that meets the specific needs of their market and customers.

8. Helping Mother Earth

Quite simply, buying from a locally-owned shop conserves energy and resources in the form of less fuel for transportation and less packaging.

We are always looking for great local shops! Tell us in the comments a few of the best ones you've encountered on your travels?

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