As we begin our research for remodeling the kitchen, I picked up a copy of Consumer Reports Kitchen Planning and Buying Guide 2008. A section on best buys rated appliance retailers on price, selection, service, etc. Turns out that shoppers scored “independent stores” at 89% and 87% (for small and major appliances) bringing this category in at #2 in both types.
Family-owned and other local and regional companies really know what it takes to keep customers happy. With less spending power than their monstrous counterparts for marketing, businesses like Abt in the Chicago area go above and beyond run-of-the-mill sales operations and offer thoughtful selections and top-notch service.
So don’t worry if the bigger fish seem to be dwarfing your efforts to attract new customers or clients. Small, local and independent businesses still offer real value to the people who want and need their products and services. Folks will remember a good experience even when prices aren’t equal. So keep giving them what they want and minnows like us will keep coming out on (or very nearly close to the) top.