Nearbuy is a local shopping app designed to make shopping at small businesses a simple, compelling and convenient option — rather than just a nice idea for the civic-minded.

By providing shoppers with an up-to-date, searchable interface that aggregates the inventories of their neighborhood retail stores, Nearbuy eliminates the guesswork and disappointment that so frequently drive shoppers to make more and more of their purchases at chain stores or over the internet.

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And by automatically calculating the best route to the closest store, Nearbuy provides at-a-glance, actionable data fine-tuned to the unique shopping needs of harried city-dwellers.

In this way, Nearbuy offers small businesses a competitive advantage in a fight that’s largely stacked against them, given prevailing market forces such as skyrocketing commercial rents and ever-increasing competition for consumer mindshare.

This matters because a win for small business is a win for New York City: keeping local retailers in business helps preserve the city’s vibrant, unique character and push back against unchecked gentrification.