It’s official: July is National Independent Retailer Month.  But I say make it run all year, not just in July!

Independent Retailer Month started back in 2003, then was adopted in New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia and New Jersey in 2009 to advance the business for independent retailers. And in 2011 it went international and expanded to the United Kingdom.

Driving traffic to independent retailers only makes sense for local communities. Independent retailers are a vital hub in their towns and help the whole community prosper. Their contribution locally is huge.

A dollar spent with an independent retailer stays in the community. The Independent Retailer Month sponsors report that a dollar spent at a local independent is usually shared 6 to 15 times before it leaves the local community. That means for every $1, retailers create $5 to $14 in value within its community.  They say, “Buying from an independent retailer boosts your local economy, rebuilding confidence in the community, enabling local businesses to prosper and grow.”

Independent Retail Month is a call to action for local independents to reach out into their communities and bring the message of local prosperity home. The American Independent Business Alliance reports that in cities with active “Buy Independent/Buy Local” or “Local First” campaigns have much stronger holiday sales than those cities without such programs.

How can you get involved?  

  • First, reach out to your local Chamber of Commerce, your mayor, city council and elected officials to share this important news about the contribution local retailers make.
  • Second, investigate how a national organization like Main Street America or Buy Local Coalition could activate your community and help organize a local program that spotlights the contribution local businesses make. Such programs can drive customers to your door.
  • Third, make your store a prime example of the best that local independent businesses can be: Make your shop POP!
My new book, Shops that POP!  7  Steps to Extraordinary Retail Success, was written about and for independent retailers. In it you’ll learn how to tap the “Buy Independent/Buy Local” trend, fueled by the desire of the highest-potential and highest-spending customers’ passion for a new shopping experience that they can’t find at the mall, in the national chains or in big box stores.

Shops that POP! will Inspire you. It will Inform you. It will Challenge

you. But most importantly, it till Give you strategies and tactics you can put to work today to make your store an independent retail success every day, every month, all year.
Order your copy today

Learn from one of the best shops that POP! Beekman 1802 Mercantile

At this year’s National Retail Federation Big Show! Small Business Experience, Brent Ridge and I shared the podium to tell the story of how Beekman 1802 Mercantile with the help of its neighbors have re-energized their local community of Sharon Springs, NY from a sleepy little town to a thriving destination for visitors from all over the country and the world. Their secret weapon? Making retail personal.

Click the link below to learn how small retail shops are giving new life to Main Streets everywhere and get ideas to make your local community thrive too.