Retail Council Bands Together To Keep NYS Shoppers Buying Local

I Shop New York

It’s a Chamber of Commerce duty for the modern era: the Retail Council of New York State launched an initiative for which the goal is to keep shoppers buying from their local stores, rather than online.  “I Shop New York” offers discounts and other incentives to consumers to counteract the pull of the Web.

The Retail Council, which is a non-profit trade organization, lets New Yorkers search for offers from local merchants and encourages merchants to sign up, display “I Shop New York” signage, and join the campaign.  Between the two sides’ participation, the Retail Council’s overall goal is to educate consumers on the importance of buying from local businesses, and to support those businesses via programs to save money (which includes offering workers’ comp insurance programs and cheaper ways to process credit cards).

I Shop New York campaign picture

On the consumer end, the organization’s initiative is still fairly small — there are just a few local retailer offers right now.  However, it represents something bigger in terms of a real-world push against the lure of online commerce.  Despite its grassroots image, “I Shop New York,” with more participants and expansion to other states, could be nationally effective.  And as more consumers move online, the program looks like a harbinger of bigger movements to come, at the physical end of the retail spectrum.


3 Responses to “Retail Council Bands Together To Keep NYS Shoppers Buying Local”

  1. Rebecca Flach

    Thanks for commenting on I Shop NY, our effort to support local stores. Someone needs to fight for brick-and-mortar businesses and we’re up for the challenge.

    We’re not opposed to online shopping; in fact, many of the stores participating in I Shop NY have a physical location and an e-commerce site. We’re simply encouraging New Yorkers to strike a balance in their shopping habits and spend some of their money locally before turning to out-of-state Internet only merchants. Why? Because local stores employ our neighbors, support our tax base and add vibrancy and variety to our communities. Not many out-of-state Internet only merchants have that sort of local impact.

    When I drive around my small town which is currently filled with vacant buildings, I envision a time when I’ll see busy stores with their doors propped open to welcome summer shoppers. I see bustling restaurants with unique menus that employ hundreds. My day dreams will never be a reality if I spend all my discretionary income online and out-of-state.

    Today’s technology – social media, mobile marketing and the like – give us the tools we need to advocate for local businesses. And that’s just what we’re going to do.

    Rebecca Flach
    Retail Council of New York State / I Shop NY


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