A MAJORITY of Brits say that the cost of living crisis is forcing them to shun local shops in favour of big brands to get the cheapest prices.
فقط 21 per cent of those surveyed said they like to support small and medium size enterprises (SMEs) like corner shops due to better customer service, unique products and a sense of community.
في أثناء, ضخم 80 per cent SMEs said they were struggling to compete with lower prices offered by national brands, في حين 72 per cent said they were losing customers over it.
As the cost of living crisis bites, 73 per cent felt that the current economic climate makes it harder for them to compete.
Over two thirds of small shops admitted that spiralling inflation had forced them to hike prices.
This has hurt their customer base, مع 42 per cent of individuals saying that soaring bills and mortgage rates have already forced them to look for the cheapest options available.
This comes after a relative boom for local shop owners, which saw 67 per cent of SMEs receive an influx of customers during the pandemic, has fizzled out.
More than half of consumers said that they had tried harder to support smaller retailers between March 2020 و 2022.
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These numbers have nosedived this year as a quarter of shoppers have scaled back their local spending due to rising costs, بالرغم من 47 per cent enjoying the friendliness of local outlets.
SMEs are fighting back, رغم ذلك, with a third searching for cheaper suppliers and 31 per cent reducing energy use.
لحسن الحظ, 73 per cent of owners said that their customer base has been largely understanding or supportive amid economic turmoil.
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John Baldwin, head of commercial banking at Santander UK, قالت: “SMEs are the lifeblood of the UK economy and loved by consumers – where they can, people want to shop local and support local businesses which is encouraging.
“Many have already adapted their business models, enhanced their products, explored and exploited new markets, developed new skills and reviewed their costs and pricing to counter the spiralling cost of supplies, energy and labour.”