By: Alejandro Becerra
Picking up where we left it on the last blog post, the increasing role technology plays in our life has not only affected how we travel but how and where we shop.
In this post, we will see some of the reasons why local businesses have been struggling and how, you and I as regular shoppers, can benefit from bringing back our money to the local economy.
Local businesses have always been the backbone of our thriving communities: personally, my ideal Sunday would be buying bread from that traditional bakery that has been in the same corner for 30+ years, having lunch in the same place our parents used to go when they were kids, buying books from that cozy family-owned bookstore and then requesting a taxi home from the operator around the corner.
The reality is a bit different: many of those places have disappeared as the ways of doing business changed. In some cases, this was driven by new competitors arriving from outside our area, by the ease of purchasing similar products online from retailers who sold cheaper, or by our tastes changing too fast for them to adapt. But this is not a new event: those changes around our companies, industries, and communities were first observed and analysed by Michael Porter in 1979.
Governments and communities have started to take action to make it easier for our local businesses to compete: start-ups like EyeSafe have been created with the aim of making local industries more competitive against global competitors and supporting the local economy. We are doing this in hand with the input and support of local businesses and local groups trying to, as was stated in a report by the URBACT Programme, “find clever ways to marry local traditions with new growth opportunities.”
By bringing business back to our local industries our communities will gain:
1- More taxes and more investment in the region: the more businesses are in a community, the bigger the tax income will be for the local government. This income can then be invested in parks, local schools and better roads among other things that will make living in there better (research has shown that of $100 spent in local businesses, $63 stay in the community, compared to $43 that would stay if those $100 were spent in a company from outside it),
2- More employment: when there are more thriving businesses in a community, more people will be able to be employed by them. This ensures that there is money flowing around the rest of the local economy, as employees spend their salaries around the different businesses in the community. And finally,
3- More entrepreneurship: when having businesses in a community is seen as a possible path to success, and young people are able to learn and see it work from the people around them, not only will they be more likely to become entrepreneurs in the long run, but them doing so will result in the community benefiting from the innovations they bring with it!
At EyeSafe we want to make our local taxi industry more competitive, stronger and better overall. We understand that they are a source of safety, community relations, and pride. That is why when you order a taxi service through EyeSafe you will only be responded to by a locally licensed private hire operator or hackney carriage, bringing the business back to them and money back to our communities! Download EyeSafe now!
Vector designed by brgfx and taken from freepik.com