Local Business Consumer Sentiment Study

Any small business owner will tell you: the community is your biggest asset. Although, understanding what your customers want from your business and your brand isn’t always clear.

Here at Red Egg Marketing, we work with dozens of small businesses and local shops to prepare and execute marketing strategies for a local demographic. Our team wanted to take a deep dive into what exactly these consumers are looking for in a brand. We surveyed over 1,600 Americans to find out what companies they’re more willing to support, and how often the average person goes out of their way to shop local.

Defining “Local”

You may consider your business a local company, but do your customers? Turns out, over 60 percent of Americans consider a business “local” as long as it operates within their city’s limits. However, some of our respondents believe you have to be a bit closer to home to be considered “local” – 22 percent say a local business is one that operates within their neighborhood.

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Regardless of location, how many people are local shoppers? Over 93 percent say they have been a customer of a local business, and 7 in 10 say intentionally go out of their way to support local businesses.

Local Lovers

So, how loyal are these local shoppers? Apparently, very! Over half of our respondents say they shop locally once a month. Whether that be at their favorite local restaurant or at a weekend farmers market, there are some loyal locals out there ready to buy. Only around 3 percent of respondents say they shop locally less frequently than once a year.

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When it comes to motivations, most of these shoppers are choosing local products to intentionally support their community’s businesses. Other common reasons for choosing local products are that they’re better quality and more accessible. A positive compliment for all local shops!

Brushing Up on Brands

How well do shoppers know your brand? Is there research involved in making a purchase? When asked if they do research about a brand before handing over their credit card, 7 in 10 Americans do, in fact, do their homework. 

Your shoppers are checking up on your brand via your website, social media, and product listings most often. Given that over 67 percent of your potential customers are basing their purchase off of the information and content you present online, it’s imperative that small businesses have a big presence. To keep your customers happy, it may be a good idea to ensure your website is user friendly!

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Tip

There are great opportunities to take advantage of some low hanging fruit when it comes to your business’ online presence. Claiming and optimizing your business location on Google My Business is a great place to start. You can also outline your business’ backstory with your website copy. This gives customers a better understanding of your brand while highlighting the local allure of your offerings.

Cashing in on Local Products

When push comes to shove, 82.76 percent of shoppers say they would rather support a local business than a large corporation. 8 in 10 would even spend more money if it were going to a local shop. It’s great to know that Americans are interested in boosting the success of their community’s businesses even if the cost may be a bit higher.

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Standing Apart from the Competition

The research is clear. Not only are Americans more than willing to go the extra mile for their community businesses, but they’re interested in knowing the shops they support. In an age of endless resources and content online, it’s important to make sure your business stands above the competition.

Whether you’re looking to improve the user interface on your website or jazz up your social media presence to influence new buyers, a small business marketing team can help you put your best foot forward.

That’s where the Red Egg Marketing team comes in. Our multifaceted team of talented creatives will integrate seamlessly into your organization, adding the full suite of marketing services you need with the flexibility you want. We develop marketing strategies to make your business stand out and get discovered. Our team believes that a business, regardless of size, can use affordable, highly effective marketing strategies to run a successful marketing campaign. Sometimes the only thing better than doing it yourself is realizing you don’t have to!

Methodology

To compile the data above, we surveyed 1,653 Americans over the age of 18. The participant gender breakdown was 59.18% female and 40.82% male. Of the respondents, 7.38% were a part of Generation Z, 33.84% were Millennials, 35.29% were a part of Generation X, 21.73% were Baby Boomers, and 1.76% were a part of the Silent Generation. We collected at least 70 respondents from every region of the United States and from every income bracket from $0-$200,000. Because the data we present rely on self-reported accounts, they may not be a perfect representative of all samples, though we made an attempt to display the data as accurately as possible.

Fair Use Statement

Feel free to use our images and data for noncommercial purposes. If you do decide to utilize this research, please attribute our team’s work with a link to the original study.