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Making a Difference

I walked into a local store last week to see if they had a product I was searching for it. I could conveniently buy this on Amazon for less money, but prefer to support local business owners.

I know it makes a difference for them when I choose to spend money locally.

It makes a difference for my community. It creates jobs for my neighbors. When local businesses are successful they can donate more money to local causes and events like Little League, Adopt A Dog, or the Library foundation.

It Makes a Difference

It takes more time shop locally than it does to click and order from my computer, but I choose to do it anyway. Many of you readers choose to as well and I thank you for that.

Choosing to spend our money at locally owned businesses creates a thriving economy.

  • For every $100 you spend at a local business about $70 remains in our local area.
  • For every $100 you spend at a big box store only $40 remains local.

It Makes a Difference

Unfortunately getting people to shop local takes more than just statistical information and relying on people’s ‘good will’. In order to create customer loyalty and shop locally customers need to have great Customer Service experiences.

Unfortunately, when I walked into my local store last week my Customer Experience resulted in me spending ZERO dollars and writing this article. I’m going to make my purchase in a neighboring community because my local experience was so bad. Here’s what happened on a busy Saturday afternoon.

I walked in and approached the counter to ask about a product. The gentleman behind the register was on the computer and partially turned around speaking to a coworker. I waited a bit. Then a bit longer.

When I asked him about this product he didn’t even turn to face me, he just looked over his shoulder. He then continued typing on the computer and continued his conversation with the staff member.

He didn’t say he was looking something up for me, (although I assumed he was). For all intents and purposes, it looked like he was diving back into whatever work he was doing before I walked in. So, I decided to browse and see what I could find myself.

A few minutes later I hear him talking rather loudly. He was still behind the cash register; I was in a completely different part of the store. He began walked toward me asking the question loudly until I looked up. He wasn’t within 15 feet of me when I realized the was asking the question of me. So I answered. He turned around and went back to the computer to look it up.

I decided I’d had enough and was going to go elsewhere. As I walked by the counter he told me he could order it in, I said I would think about it and walked out.

I’ll gladly take my business to a neighboring town.

It Makes a Difference

The owners were not there, it was the weekend. It was busy and the business could have cashed in on all those customers in the store browsing. Yet these two employees continued to chitchat behind the counter with little to no regard for the actual people who were there with money to spend.

I have to believe that if the owners were watching this interaction via a little spy Cam on my shoulder that they would be appalled.

The amount of money lost for this local business during a busy weekend in the summer breaks my heart. I can only imagine.

It Makes a Difference

Greeting customers, welcoming them, training staff to understand that their job is to make people feel welcomed, it makes a difference. When staff understand and are trained that service is selfless and it’s hard and it’s important, they rise to the occasion. If we don’t train them, they don’t.

If you’re a local business owner and you’d like to make sure your customers never have this experience, contact me for some solutions. Samantha@Kaizen.Zone

Together we can make sure your business thrives, your employees are engaged, and your customers are delighted every step of the way.


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