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Apr 01

Go Local: Shop Vienna

Posted on April 1, 2013 at 7:37 PM by Kirstyn Barr

Did you know that studies show that 85% of purchases are made within five miles of home? In spite of this, 63% of small businesses have no website, and a whopping 91% don’t have an effective mobile presence. As part of our campaign to help local Vienna businesses, the Town has contracted to implement the Go Local program, which we will brand “Shop Vienna.” It will be accessible directly from the Town’s website.

Shop Vienna will provide a portal for local businesses to have their own online and mobile presence, on the cheap. The Town will absorb the initial expense of $1,975, and mail an informational insert to every business along with its business license renewal. Businesses may opt in to the program. The estimated annual cost of $25 per business is based on 100 participating, but that could be even lower if more businesses choose to take part.

With Shop Vienna, each business will have a page of its own, with the opportunity to link customers to its own website. Citizens can subscribe to a business and receive updates and information about that business, such as specials, coupons, and even job openings. How far we have come from the days, not so long ago, that the Town printed a restaurant directory that was out-of-date almost immediately.

The City of Chesapeake, Virginia has been using “Buy Local Chesapeake” for about a year. "It's so difficult to go on Google and find a local company, especially since so many people are buying national ads," said Robert Ike, a member of the Chesapeake Business Advisory Panel, to the Virginian-Pilot newspaper. Check out  Buy Local Chesapeake to get a glimpse of what is coming to Vienna.  

Shop Vienna has the enthusiastic endorsement of the Vienna Business Association and the Town/Business Liaison Committee. It has the potential to be a powerful marketing tool for local businesses. Watch for it, coming July 1 to the Town of Vienna website.

Edythe Frankel Kelleher
Vienna Town Councilmember