The Buy Local Bonus program, run by the City of San Luis Obispo, has come to an end for the holiday season. The results are in and the program has had a significant impact on the local economy for the fourth year in a row, according to the SLO Chamber of Commerce.
The program included several local businesses such as The Mountain Air, Boo Boo Records, and Open Air Flowers. In order to support these businesses, the city increased its initial investment to $125,000. This money was used to purchase twenty-five $25 gift cards from qualified local businesses. The promotion ran from Nov. 24 to Dec. 23 and encouraged shoppers to prioritize local retailers in San Luis Obispo.
Molly Cano, SLO City Economic Development & Tourism Manager expressed her happiness about the substantial number of community members who chose to spend their money at local retailers despite the convenience of online shopping. Despite expectations, the program sold out earlier than anticipated and exhausted all available funding. This year’s program saw approximately 5,000 shoppers qualifying for the promotion – a 23% increase from the previous year. Gift cards were distributed among 170 different local businesses showing widespread support for the program.
Overall, it appears that this year’s Buy Local Bonus program was successful in generating sales for local businesses and encouraging community members to support them during the holiday season