Want to shop at locally owned stores around the city? Check out BuyCincy.com. The web site was just launched in August, but it is quickly becoming a comprehensive guide to the area’s independently owned stores.

Sean Fisher, who will soon graduate with an Urban Planning degree from the University of Cincinnati, is behind the site. His goal: help smaller stores get publicity and alert the community to the economic benefits of buying locally.

“The money you spend at local stores goes right back to the community,” Fisher says. Owners of the stores listed on the website live and spend money in the Tristate, and the profits from these stores aren’t going to a big box corporate headquarters in another city, he points out.
“In a world where taking a short walk to the corner store has been replaced by traffic congestion, endless parking lots and vacant superstores, the formulaic national chains are again at the forefront,” reads the website. “In Ohio alone, there is more than 1.3 million square feet of vacant Wal-Mart stores. And folks, those don’t look pretty.”

Fisher also espouses the “unparalleled customer service” offered by Cincinnati’s vibrant local business scene. “You can walk in and have a half-hour conversation with the people there. Try getting attention like that at a big chain store.”