The greatest power that we have as consumers is the ability to put our money behind brands that we love, brands whose ethos and beliefs align with us and what we care about. It could just be on an aesthetic level, but many people feel a deeper sense of responsibility in what they wear, and want to support designers and companies who are doing something for the world and helping their communities in meaningful ways.
For some consumers, this means only buying from brands who produce sustainable fashion or purchasing union made shirts. And for a growing number of people, it’s buying clothing from smaller, independent retailers. Small businesses are the backbone of economies and the communities they serve, and the people who work for them and earn money through them. The pandemic has been rough for many brands, and for small businesses who don’t have a big corporate backing, keeping the lights on has been a struggle.
Many consumers have taken this time to be a light in this challenging time to support those businesses and help them keep going. If you’re considering following this trend, here are a few ways you can support small fashion businesses.
Sign Up For a Fashion Subscription Box
There’s a subscription box for just about anything, from unique gifts to personalized style boxes. Signing up for them is a great way to support small businesses. There are boxes for healthy food delivered to your door to make figuring meals out so much easier, and boxes of beauty products that allow you to pamper yourself from the comfort of your home. There are also fashion-based boxes for adults and also kids clothing subscription boxes.
For example, kidpik is a fashion subscription box for kids delivering personalized outfits. Each box contains 7 items, allowing you to create a minimum of 3 complete mix and match outfits, styled specifically for the subscriber based on a 3-minute style quiz. When you sign up for subscription boxes, you support a small business by giving them recurring income over time.
Because they are indie businesses with less running costs, these subscription boxes are actually saving you money, and helping you solve the challenge of figuring out what clothes to get for your kids with way less stress. By supporting them, you’re actually making a difference to your own life!
Buy On Etsy
Platforms like Etsy feature fashion products from independent designers, creators and brands, and supporting them is as easy as joining the site, looking for exactly what you want and buying it. Etsy gives small business owners an online shop front, where consumers can easily connect with them in a way they couldn’t have done on their own.
What’s also great about Etsy is that the creators are reviewed and rated, so you can trust them, and know the kind of service and products to expect from each vendor. From jewelry to beautiful dresses, Etsy is a great place to step up your style and make a difference to business owners. Remember for those kinds of brands, every purchase goes a really long way.
Give Them Some Love Online
Did you know that one mention and tag on a social media site can completely skyrocket their sales and introduce them to more customers and fans? We live in an era where people get more product recommendations from micro-influencers, and even their own friends. If you buy something from them, you can give them a shoutout on Instagram and your own followers will see that and perhaps learn about a great new place to shop.
When it comes to knowing which small businesses to support, many consumers don’t even know where to begin and who to buy from. You can provide them with a great recommendation and help increase the visibility of a small business that can use all the awareness it can get on social media. You may think you need to have hundreds of thousands of followers to give them a shoutout, but every mention and every tag makes a huge impact.
Stop Supporting Unethical Brands
Over the last year, we’ve seen that some big-name fashion brands don’t have the most ethical practices. One of those not-so-great practices is stealing the designs of smaller indie designers and selling them on their sites for less money.
As a consumer who wants to support small businesses, one of the most responsible things you can do is stop buying from brands who take part in practices that make it harder for small retailers to operate. Indie brands lose so much income from having their hard work cheapened by big name and big money retailers, why not help them by not supporting them?
You can be assured that it will have a really big benefit on those businesses and allow them to stay in businesses and keep on supporting families and communities.