Retailers in Australia should benefit from a strong sense of local loyalty over this long weekend, according to the 2014 Australia Day Index from Westpac.

Australian patriotism has inspired nine out of ten Aussie consumers to declare their loyalty to local ‘corner stores’ ahead of Australia Day this year.

“It’s great to see nine in ten Australians are loyal to small business, and nearly half (45 per cent) are spending more with local suppliers than 12 months ago” Westpac General Manager of Retail Banking Gai McGrath said in a January 20 media release.

“We hope this support continues, especially in the lead up to Australia Day.”

In particular, a number of Australian consumers have pledged loyalty to local grocery stores (39 per cent), pharmacies (37 per cent), restaurants (21 per cent), bakeries (20 per cent) and butcheries (20 per cent).

Almost half (49 per cent) of those surveyed by Westpac as part of this report agree they prefer to purchase from local small business in order to help strengthen the nation’s economy.

Additionally, 71 per cent of survey respondents believe shopping locally helps improve their community, while over two-thirds (68 per cent) admit they would feel like they had lost part of their neighbourhood if a local small business closed down or moved away.

This local loyalty is also encouraging for those businesses relying on word-of-mouth promotion, as 50 per cent of respondents claim they prefer to show their support of local businesses by recommending them to friends, family and colleagues.

With Australia Day upon us, it’s a great time for local retailers to review their retail insurance policy.

As customer loyalty draws the crowds to local businesses this long weekend, are you covered for theft, stock damage or public liability?

To ensure your business can continue to service your loyal customers, talk to MGA Insurance about retail insurance cover today.