Is Amazon truly helping the economy?

A new study looked into answering this question and the results may surprise you. Findings show Amazon’s earnings aren’t as meaningful to communities and local economies as we think.

Home Sweet Home: Locals vs. Amazon

This years “Home Sweet Home: Locals vs Amazon” study was the first in its series to take into account the effect of online retailers on local communities. Civil Economics took into comparison three segments of retail which included independent retailers, national chain retailers, and Amazon. The study dove deeper into how independent hardware/home improvement stores compare to large competitors in recirculating money in local communities through labor, profits, philanthropy, etc.


Study Findings

Once research was completed, the study showed that local retailers reinvest 130 percent more of their revenues than chain retailers and a whopping 676 percent more of their revenues than Amazon. It was also concluded that if 10% more of the home improvement market was invested by Amazon from local retailers, there would be a $9.3 billion loss in local economic activity.

It can clearly be seen by these results that it is tremendously more beneficial to the local economy when consumers choose to shop local instead of Amazon.  A study by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance also revealed similar results, with 90% of small business owners saying that Amazon has a negative impact on their business.

As convenient and diverse Amazon’s services are, they aren’t entirely good for the economy of your local community. If you are shopping for a specific item and need to choose from a wide array of products, Amazon will get the job done. But if you’re casually browsing online, maybe you will think twice before adding that product to your cart and make the drive to a local business instead. Your local economy will thank you.