5 WAYS TO HELP IRISH RETAIL DURING A LEVEL 5 LOCKDOWN
I read a post last week by Instagram profile @ChampionGreen
“If each of us spent an extra €20 a week in small businesses over the next 3 months it would boost our economy by €875 million” (Sven Spollen-Behrens, SFA Director)
When our economy thrives, we all thrive. This means local jobs, national economic security and investment in local facilities. Now I know during a global pandemic €20 extra euros can be hard to find on a weekly basis; especially for workers who are relying on the PUP payment. But I would suggest you do not need to find an additional €20, just consider redistributing €20 from a multinational site, to a local site.
Especially coming into Christmas were most of the retail spending is done. Consider attributing your spend to local business’. Even though many retail workers are not able to work at the minute; if they are going to have jobs once the pandemic is over, we need to keep local business’ in business.
5 practical ways you can help-
Give the gift of choice! If you have a trusted favourite, Irish retailer (or hospitality establishment) buy a gift card to support their business. Even consider asking business that had to shut with level 5 restrictions, and do not have the capacity to work online yet. They may look forward to the prospect of business post-lockdown.
2. Irish Business Directories-
Recently I came across 2 Irish business directories to assist you in finding local shops or services. Many of the listings even had links to the business’ website to save you having to find them yourself. They were incredibly easy to use and a great starting point for online shopping. They are: https://lovegreen.ie/ and https://croiaireland.com/ (which may not be fully live yet, but do sign up to their Social Media and newsletter).
3. Look for website credentials-
Another post by @Championgreen shared that “70% of online sales in Ireland are spent abroad”. That is a HUGE percentage! Companies based abroad do not pay taxes in Ireland, so the money leaves this country and is of no further benefit to our economy. So how do you tell if the site is Irish? Using a .ie URL is not a guarantee. Many global companies buy URLs in many different countries to appear local and safe. You might have to do some digging… Consider- Where is their head office? Where are they shipping from? A simple google search might answer this one.
4. Follow local Instagram accounts-
Many local businesses couldn’t adapt an online e-commerce website fast enough for the pandemic, and have been left without income during the level 5 lockdown. Most however are advertising their wares on Social Media; offering a very personalised service to facilitate the sale. Often opening especially for customers, offering home deliveries; going above and beyond for their customers. It is the Irish hospitality that Ireland is famous for, more than a multinational corporation could ever do for you.
5. Share this post with a friend, so they can do the same!
Building awareness about the impact of our consumerists habits is really important to see systemic change. I wholeheartedly believe in the power of the individual. It can seem sometimes like our actions are not impactful; however, you are one piece in a big jigsaw, and it’s only with all the pieces that we can see the final lovely picture.
So vote with your wallet! If Ireland is important to you, please spend accordingly this festive season. I will be!