GRAND HAVEN, MICH. — Shopping local helps more than just the one small business you support. Your purchases affect the local economy, according to an expert with Grand Valley.
“If these small businesses close, you’re going to have empty storefronts. But you’re also going to have market consolidation," Clinical Professor of Economics Christian Glupker said.
Consolidation means more chain stores. Something Grand Haven is trying to avoid, with a new effort by the Downtown Development Authority to support small local businesses.
“It would be such a huge impact to our businesses if, rather than buying it on amazon, why don’t I pick up the phone and see if my local shop can get it,” Grand Haven Main Street Spokesperson Jeremy Swiftney said.
Mackite in Downtown Grand Haven sells all types of toys and gifts for the kids. They've been in business for nearly 40 years. Owner Lynn Nagen says the support this year means everything.
“It's so important to support local. We want to see these businesses around next year. If we don’t deliberately and consciously support small businesses, they’re not going to be there for us next time,” Nagen said.
And you don't have to go in-person to the store to shop. Most small businesses in communities have learned since March how to operate an online store, with pickup in person. Mackite is one of those places.
“You can order online, we deliver within ten miles,” Nagen said.