Why Local Matters

Shop Local has become such a common catchphrase that it may be tempting to dismiss the impact a small purchase can make on the local economy.

The Multiplier Effect is the additional economic benefit to an area from money being spent in the local economy. On average, 48 percent of each purchase at local, independent businesses was recirculated locally, compared to less than 14 percent of purchases at chain stores (according to studies by private research firm Civic Economics).

How does this work in Venango County? Our cover features two businesses who not only are impacted by local spending by those who purchase from them, but also redistribute their profits to other local businesses and to the community.

Clarks Donuts, locally owned and operated, may have a sale of a donut, which costs as little as the change in your pocket, to the more common sales of dozens of donuts from regular customers. They credit their expansion in recent years to the opportunity to work with businesses throughout the region.

Meagan Neidich, title, remarks: “We make daily deliveries to those who resell at locations convenient to a broader consumer base, but also have businesses who routinely order dozens of our donuts and baked goods for employee and work events.”

When we asked Meagan about Clark’s reinvestment, she easily listed off many local businesses and Chamber members, who they use for goods and services. Direct impact is spending done by a business in the local economy to operate the business, including inventory, utilities, equipment and pay to employees.

One of these many businesses that Clark’s reinvests with is Northpointe Automotive, the local car dealership where several of Clark’s fleet vehicles were purchased in recent years. Northpointe’s owner, Jim Corwin (pictured on the cover with Meagan) further explains: “We invest in our employees and in charitable donations, as well as paying taxes, which inures we have adequate schools and infrastructure in our communities.”

An important consideration in buying and spending local is knowing where to find the goods and services you need. Additionally, most consumers are interested in spending money with businesses they know and/or trust.  Before making a trip out of town or visiting an online store, consider calling your chamber or visiting our website at, to explore where you might make your purchase locally.  Chamber members and staff are always willing to make suggestions if you can’t find a supplier easily. 

While we all appreciate the convenience  of chain and online stores and may have purchases that are only possible at these businesses, it is important to remember that the more frequently we can shift our spending to local, independent establishments, the more we contribute to the economic future of our community.

You can read more about the Multiplier Effect at

Invest in your community! Shop local.

This article was published in the Venango Chamber’s November 2019 VenangoWorks! Newsletter.

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