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Supporting local is a multi-layered statement that can involve Amazon and “large” online marketplaces. In my community, the common cry is “support local”, which is great. I’m a member of our local Chamber of Commerce, I actively seek out small batch and artisan creators and enjoy the diversity small businesses bring to a community. Here’s the thing, what people really mean when they say “support local” is “support the local businesses whose store fronts we drive past”. There’s a plethora of local businesses hidden in shared workspaces, behind cottage industry and home-based businesses. So, how can a community support these micro-businesses?


Here’s the purchasing hierarchy:

  1. Buy local
  2. Buy small, where they are. Direct is best, however, another sales channel may actually be better, and here’s why


Amazon has been the bane of my existence. I have lost count of the numerous problems caused by Amazon from moving and losing inventory, to not understanding our product and taking 3 years to list, to another year + to be listed on FBA (Prime), to the creative accounting and reporting alongside metrics that don’t reflect our business values. I could go on….if you’ve sold on Amazon, you already know the inertia inherent in interfacing with representatives with no knowledge of the issues and no authority to resolve the issue as one-size-does-not-fit-all.


Here’s the thing. Amazon, and other online marketplaces such as The Grommet, give small and innovative businesses a voice, reach, distribution, and discoverability. Some platforms are much easier, and enjoyable, to work with than others, each has its established customer network waiting to be introduced your business. What this means in a tangible, everyday way:


  1. These marketplaces can hold inventory, inventory that can be prepared ahead of a busy time, such as the holidays season, allowing small businesses to focus on other things such as supporting local via pop up events, focusing on other essential business activities such as content creation, advertising and marketing to drive awareness, or, hopefully, to actually enjoy the busy season!
  2. Say you want to support your local business by gifting someone in another state. It’s the last minute and small businesses are at the mercy of shipping company rates which are high for small businesses generally and higher during busy seasons. Expediting shipping may well cost more than the item with no guarantee of arriving in time. By partnering with online marketplaces, my inventory is held at warehouses across the country and can reach a customer quicker when sent from a different state. In the case of coast-to-coast shipping, days earlier – quicker which also decreases the chance of the package being lost or damaged in transit


As a customer-centric business where individualized attention and fulfilling promises matters, I would rather you support my small business through any of our channel partners than not at all. If you can’t buy direct, or it doesn’t make sense to, buy through one of our partners, it’s OK!


Happy Q4!                   


Mixify creates innovative, fun, experiential creator kits for teens and tweens that ignite their curiosity



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