By Lance Henderson
Businesses looking to have an online presence have a new place to call home.
On Sept. 1, Local Aware (localaware.com), a web-based community where members can find locally owned businesses and share their enthusiasm for the Buy Local movement, launched its searchable business community and interactive member features in Whatcom County and British Columbia.
Owner and founder Edward Kim said it was when he learned that 60 cents from every dollar spent in national chain stores leaves the local economy that he decided to create Local Aware.
“I want to encourage consumers to walk, bike, bus, and if need be, drive out to brick-and-mortar locally owned businesses,” Kim said. “It’s all about bringing local consumers and local businesses together, but many consumers aren’t aware of the independently owned businesses in their own community.”
The Web site is open to all local businesses from farmers to galleries to auto mechanics and cafes. Big box stores and national chains will not be allowed.
The service is free for all consumers and costs $15 for businesses who want a searchable, interactive, updatable business profile that can host coupons and blogs.
“Local Aware helps businesses to stay in business, but at the same time gives consumers more spending power,” Kim said.
For more information, call (360) 255-7399 or visit www.localaware.com.