Independent Retailer Month is observed in July, and the purpose is to encourage consumers to shop locally and support independent retailers. It was established in July of 2011 in hopes of highlighting the importance of supporting local merchants. Shopping at local stores creates a cycle of sustainability in the community, town, or city in which you live, and it also help strengthen the economy and the retail sector as a whole. Additionally, these stores can be a really cool and unique addition to a town’s culture.

Independent Retailer Month Fast Figures! (via

  • Since 1990, small businesses have added 8 million jobs.
  • Independent retail returns 46.9% of all revenue to the local economy while major chains recirculate only 13.6% of revenue within local markets.
  • Only six cents of a dollar spent at a big box retailer stays in the area.
  • For every $10 million spent at local retailers, it creates an average of 57 jobs. That same amount spent at Amazon only creates an average of 14 jobs.

This month provides a great opportunity to explore local businesses in your area. They are truly vital to the economy for many reasons. A study in New Orleans found that if residents and visitors were to shift 10% of their spending from big box chains to local businesses, it would generate an additional $235 million a year in local economic activity, creating new jobs and other opportunities. This July, we encourage you to make an effort to shop locally whenever you can!

If you are an independent retailer seeking information about available financing options, visit First Bank’s SBA Lending page! The SBA also offers other resources like training and educational materials for small business owners.