join the survey series 

The methodology is designed to be simple, but it does require the local sponsoring organization to recruit participation from independent storefront retailers and restaurants. With partial matching funds provided by the ABA, we are able to provide this service to communities at modest cost.

If you think your community might wish to participate, download this introduction to the process, then contact Matt Cunningham to discuss getting started.  

But most communities cannot muster the resources to do it.  That's why Civic Economics and the American Booksellers Association teamed up in 2012 to offer the ABA Indie Impact Study Series. Read on to see what other communities have found to date, then contact Matt Cunningham to discuss how we might bring the same process to your community.

Survey Series reports available for download:

Andersonville          Bainbridge          Charleston          Hudson Valley         Las Vegas          Louisville          

Milwaukee          Ogden          Raleigh         Salt Lake City          Six Corners  

Albuquerque          Wayne County, Utah          Utah Combined

indie impact study series

a project of civic economics and the american booksellers association

Since the release of the very first independent business impact study in 2002, many communities have approached us about conducting a similar study. And while many communities have managed to develop the financial and staff resources to develop a unique and detailed local study, many more have not. 

Through the years, it has become quite clear that a substantive local study of the issues facing a particular community can produce valuable local information and earned media. One only needs to talk to the business alliances in cities like Vancouver, Grand Rapids, New Orleans, or San Francisco to understand the value these initiatives can bring.  


In 2012, ten communities participated in the Indie Impact Survey Series.  All of them included storefront retailers in the study, and five of those included restaurants, as well. Individual and aggregated findings are shown below. Since then, five additional communities have participated.  Completed community reports are available for download below.