Business

Buy Australian: Support local shoppers to help them get back on their feet

Buy Australian: Support local shoppers to help them get back on their feet

Shoppers are keen to splash their cash in their local areas and help put money back in Australian businesses’ pockets, new results show.

Whether it’s a beer or a burger, new shirt or the latest device, conscious consumers have become much more aware of the importance of supporting local business.

New independent research compiled on behalf of MasterCard quizzed 1000 Australians about their spending habits during the pandemic and found:

• 73 per cent are actively wanting to spend in their local community to help businesses bounce back.

• 69 per cent feel a greater sense of community spirit.

• 42 per cent are happy to buy items locally even if they cost more to support businesses.

MasterCard Australia’s head of retail and commerce Aaron Fidler said it was great to see consumers wanted “local choices”.

“Given what’s happened during COVID-19 it’s important that businesses we’ve all known and loved are still there and we can continue to support them,” he said.

“It’s being conscious to make those decisions to spend locally.”

The research showed eateries were among the biggest winners recently with a climb in spending at takeaway shops (up 34 per cent), cafes (31 per cent), restaurants (30 per cent) and bakeries (29 per cent).

Retailers are hoping for bumper pre-Christmas sales with less than eight weeks to go.

Council of Small Business Organisations Australia chief executive officer Peter Strong urged shoppers to think about supporting smaller operators in the months ahead.

“If you want to maintain choice and diversity you have to go back and support small businesses,” he said.

“And if you’re going to go online you can buy from lots of Australian small businesses.”

Latest Commonwealth Bank card spending data showed in the week to October 9 card spending was up by 6.9 per cent compared to 12 months ago.

Online spending rose 24.7 per cent from 12 months ago as more shoppers made purchases online instead of heading into bricks and mortar stores.

The Australian Retailers Association’s chief executive officer Paul Zahra said Australians “know every dollar earned and spent in Australia will help us recover faster”.

“Now is a great time to support your favourite local stores in the build towards Christmas,” he said.

“Aussies can also ‘shop their CBD’ for a great Christmas shopping experience and to help those struggling retailers to get back on their feet.

“Foot traffic in the CBDs remains low, with many of us still working from home and with tourist numbers at a standstill.”

The research showed about 67 per cent of shoppers planned to support their local businesses and 91 per cent are spending up to $200 a week along their local high street.

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@sophieelsworth

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