It is a large misconception that big businesses are the way to help the economy or a local community. While they can bring in many jobs, they also cost the local community more, the jobs are often underpaid, and much of the money goes back out of the community instead of in it. Small businesses are said to be the backbone of a community, and this is true in more than one way.
Small businesses once played a large factor in many communities. They were often the main employers in an area and helped the economy greatly by bringing in money from consumers, employing local workers who in turn spent money in the local region, and by supplying the local community with tax funds that can be used to build up an area. Over the years however, big businesses that moved into many small communities, and even large ones, took over much of the local consumers. This in turn caused small businesses to lose not only their customers, but also employees, causing even less funds to pour into an area. Luckily, the small business industry is once again rising.
Consumers are more willing to spend money on a locally made or locally sold product than they are at a large business. The trend of buying local has been on the rise for several years, and local businesses are taking advantage of this by promoting the availability of locally made items. Advertising is easier and more cost-effective as well, allowing the small business owner to get the word out about their business to a larger range of consumers. The technology of online websites allows many small businesses an additional way to promote and sell their products to consumers who may never come in to the actual store or area.
An advantage that small businesses have today that was not available in earlier years is the support of not only local and state governments, but the federal government as well. Officials fully acknowledge that small businesses help a community economically to remain a viable area for residents. Without small businesses running successfully, a community loses homeowners. This then causes property values to drop, leaving an area without the funds and support needed to thrive.
There are many different programs and assistance available to help small businesses succeed. These include programs for start-up small businesses, but also for existing small businesses. Many state and local government run programs offer classes, tax assistance, and even helplines for small business owners. These types of programs were often unavailable in the past, leaving a small business to fend for itself or shut down. The assistance now offered to the small business owner often can make the difference in a successful business.
Two Fold Benefits
While it is important that a small business succeed for the business owner, it is also important to the local community economically. A successful small business can bring in funds that an area would otherwise not have. A small business is also more prone to hiring local workers than a big business is. These local workers in turn can and do spend their income in other small businesses in their community, creating a circle of money in and money out, all in the same community. Small businesses are also much more willing to support their local community in other ways as well. These ways include property taxes, funds for local schools and sports teams, and being active members of a community.
Overall, while a large business may initially bring an influx of funds and jobs, in the end, it is the small business that helps a community not only survive, but also economically thrive.