Finding the Leaks

Finding the Leaks

Where does your money go?

The Go Local! ND initiative, a project of Vision West ND, is focused on creating awareness about the economic and social advantages of planning, shopping, and promoting your own community.  One aspect of this mission is identifying the potential a community has to reduce consumer leakage. 

“Consumer leakage” means that businesses outside the local trade area are fulfilling the demand for purchase of goods & services; therefore, demand is "leaking" out of the local trade area.


For Every $100 Spent At a Locally Owned Business:

  • $73 remains in local economy
  • $27 leaves local economy

Locally Owned Business


For Every $100 Spent At a Non-Locally Owned Business:

  • $43 remains in local economy
  • $57 leaves local economy

Non-Locally Owned Business

When shopping online, the amount of money that leaves the local economy is even greater.


Strategic local purchasing can positively impact local economies in ways that benefit both public and private institutions, such as being based in economically thriving communities.  Tax revenue from dollars that stay in the local economy help fund essential public services (fire, police, etc.), which are vital to providing quality of life in a community.  Locally-owned businesses also create more local jobs, hire more local people, and contribute to hometown pride and the feeling of being connected to your community.  

To find the potential for your community to reduce consumer leakage, we need your help.

The following survey provides an opportunity for you to tell us how/where you as an individual, business, organization, or government agency spend money and why.  The information gathered from the surveys will be used as a guide to indicate how well the purchasing needs of residents and local businesses/entities are being met, and to help identify ways to promote a more vibrant, diverse local economy.  

These are anonymous surveys, so please feel free to be direct. We thank you for your willingness to help us gather information!