We need to buy from small business as much as possible and not companies whose headquarters are in other states or especially overseas. For example, I typically buy from Lowes Hardware because they're headquartered in North Carolina. I like Home Depot but they're out of Atlanta. I take care of my vehicles’ needs through using local garages and tire stores.
We certainly want the best price for our budgets but there are intangible costs that we don't visibly see but it does impact us. I'll use Wal-Mart as an example. If you purchase from them make sure the product is American made. There's no doubt Wal-Mart is providing locals jobs but if you're buying merchandise from them that comes from someplace like China, a majority of the money you're spending is going there and providing jobs.
Even if I bought an American made product from a Wal-Mart, around 15% of the store's profit goes to their corporate office in Bentonville, Arkansas. This creates all kinds of support jobs there (i.e. accounting, customer service, human resources, tech support, etc.), jobs that if I did business with companies headquartered in my area would be made available here thus helping my economy. I want people in my world to have money to spend.
This is the best way I can impact the economy. I can't buy as much stuff as I could because I know I pay higher prices for some things but for me, that's okay, I've got too much "stuff" as it is. We have become a country that often buys "wants" not "needs" like it was decades ago. So don't feel overwhelmed like you can't make a difference because you can. Buy local and make "your" world a better place. Thanks.