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How local shopping benefits communities

ATHENS, Alabama – One industry hit hard during the COVID-19 pandemic was small businesses and local stores in northern Alabama are still recovering.

Business owners in Athens told News 19 that they hope this holiday season will be a step in the right direction and that community members will choose to buy local.

The US Small Business Administration reports that when you spend $ 100 on a local business, $ 48 stays in the community. But, spend the same $ 100 at a major retailer and only stay $ 14. They say the reason is that small businesses are more likely to rely on other local businesses, which creates a chain reaction.

The mayor of Athens, Ronnie Marks, said that small shopping supports not only your neighbors, but also the city or town in which the store is located.

“These guys are doing extremely well all around the square. We encourage people to come and shop at small businesses, ”Marks said. “Sales tax is the heart of every town and city in the state of Alabama and it all starts with small businesses.”

Marks also added that many businesses in Athens existed in 2009 during the recession, so the pandemic was not the first time they had to fight to keep their doors open.


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