This is a rant, so be forewarned!
Everyone always says to buy local and support your neighbor. That's a great concept, and one I follow most of the time.
However, it's usually cheaper to buy online and the stuff comes right to your mailbox. Most online stores offer free shipping, and trip over themselves to make it right if something does go wrong.
So, if I'm spending more money and driving to a local shop it seems like I should be able to expect it to be a good experience. I recently purchased an item and bought a spare part. The item had to be special ordered, but the part was in stock. I asked when I bought it if there were different sizes, and was assured they were all the same. The item had to be ordered, and took nearly a month to come in. I paid in advance. The spare part is wrong, so I tried to exchange it. They didn't have the correct one, or the other 3 items I went for. That's ok, they can't stock everything. I asked for a refund on the spare part, and was told I could only exchange it or get a store credit. I wasn't happy, but I agreed to the credit. It took forever to fill it out because a new employee was in training. Then I had to sign, the employee had to sign. Then they were going to have to find someone to approve the return. Really? The cashier has to get approval for a $6 credit? I ended up telling them to just keep it. It was much more trouble than it was worth, especially when it was their mistake.
Sorry for the long rant, but excellent customer service is really the one thing a local shop should offer. Maybe they only depend on tourists. I don't go in and buy a lot, but I still manage to spend a couple of grand every year.
I really need ice out to get here soon now and calm me down