Shopping local has never been more important than it has over the past 22 months. Small businesses are the lifeblood of the local economy. The holiday season can often make or break local businesses, many of whom get some of their goods from local artists and artisans. In fact holiday sales account for at least 20% of a business’s annual sales. Thankfully Erie County has quite a few shopping districts that are conveniently located no matter where you live and some that are experiencing resurgences that are well worth your time to explore.
A lot of retailers have reported that they are experiencing supply chain issues due to the influx of goods coming into our ports and cargo still waiting to be unloaded off of the cargo ships and sent to online and big box retailers. Despite some across the board production cost increases on products, Amazon reported its sixth consecutive quarter of growth. In fact according to the website DigitalCommerce360.com, “Amazon said it expects net sales in the fourth quarter of between $130.0 billion and $140.0 billion, a rise of between 4% and 12% compared with the fourth quarter of 2020.” Meanwhile mom and pop businesses in some sectors continue to struggle.
We are extremely lucky in Erie County to have such an amazing and diverse variety of small businesses that cater to the vast needs of the region. Bookstores, restaurants and bakeries, art venues, craft stores, and hair and nail salons all come to mind. Whether you are heading in with a specific gift in mind or are just going to get a gift card so that person can get something they need or want, these local businesses can cater to your needs.
Over the next few weeks, we are going to explore these shopping areas and some of the businesses that call them home. You might be familiar with some, they might even be favorites or a place you haven’t visited in a while; regardless, all are definitely worth your time to check out. Within the City of Buffalo there are over a dozen different business districts that offer a variety of retailers, restaurants and more – they include downtown, South Buffalo, Parkside, University Heights, the Old First Ward, Michigan/Jefferson, Larkinville, Broadway/Fillmore, Hertel Avenue, Grant Street, Five Points, Elmwood Village, Allentown and Blackrock. We will also explore shopping districts in the suburbs that are spread out across the county; places that include Clarence, Hamburg, East Aurora, Springville, Williamsville, Orchard Park, Lancaster, Kenmore and Hamburg.
Even if you aren’t able to visit all the districts we are going to explore, be sure to check out the websites of some of the businesses we will feature! Many, if not all, of these businesses have some sort of online presence and would be more than happy to fulfill online orders and have them shipped directly to either you or anyone you might be giving your purchase to as a gift.
Have you picked up your Shop 716 eGift Card yet? For a limited time, when you buy one for $25 or more, you get an Erie County sponsored bonus $25 eGift Card. Support local and get rewarded for it – buy yours today and view the full list of participating businesses here: https://amherst.org/shop716/
Support your local restaurants, retailers and attractions. Keep your hard earned money, right here where you live. By doing so, you keep your friends and family employed and create more local jobs. Shopping local conserves energy and resources and is better for the environment!
WNY is our home & we can show the #Buffalove we have by shopping and supporting our local businesses. The Shop 716 initiative is to be a champion of all business, supporting the shop/support local themes; to develop business unity and camaraderie to uplift our entire region.