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Helping Small Businesses Survive the Pandemic

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It’s no secret that throughout this pandemic, small local businesses have been hit hard. With the combination of businesses being required to temporarily shut down and people staying home, it has caused businesses to suffer, if not shut down for good. Despite the hard times that have fallen on these businesses, the power of community togetherness could help some survive.

There are so many reasons why supporting local businesses is good for our communities and local economies. They provide growth and innovation to our communities, while also providing employment and entrepreneurship opportunities. Local businesses are made up of some of our closest family and friends and bring a sense of uniqueness to our communities. Now more than ever, it is imperative that we stand together and rally behind these businesses.

A lot of us have felt the financial strain from the pandemic and are still worried about what the future holds. If you still have the finances and resources to help local businesses, a little goes a long way to show your support. Here are some simple ways to help out during this time:

  1. Many local restaurants and shops offer delivery and pick up, especially recently. Instead of buying from big name businesses, try supporting and purchasing from local restaurants, flower shops or even clothing boutiques that might offer curbside pickup or delivery. You might come to find out that you’ve been missing out on all the great items and delicious dishes that your local businesses have to offer.
  2. Buy gift cards from your favorite restaurants, hair salons, stores, etc. Often we buy gift cards for certain occasions like birthdays or anniversaries, but now is an even better time to support small businesses by shopping local. Take time out of your day and purchase a gift card to send to friends or family to let them know you’re thinking of them in these uncertain times. This little gesture not only means a lot to your family and friends, but also to local businesses.
  3. Maybe financially you don’t have the means to purchase from local businesses during this time. However, you can still support them by posting and sharing their services on social media. Exposure can go a long way, especially since social media has become such a large resource in society. One simple post about a business could lead to them gaining one new customer that they didn’t have before.
  4. Your appointments might have been cancelled or postponed, but you have already budgeted to pay for those services, so it wouldn’t hurt to still purchase it. If you are financially able, still pay your local hair stylist, cleaners, nannies, etc.
  5. Since a lot of the way we operate has transitioned online, check to see if services are provided virtually. There might be fitness trainings, tutoring, therapy sessions and many more services still available for you, just virtually. Just because businesses have had to close down physically for in–person visits, it doesn’t mean you still can’t purchase those services online and still support local.
  6. Now more than ever tipping workers mean a lot. It has been hard financially for waiters, delivery drivers, baristas, etc. With layoffs, work hours being cut, and even low sales, it is important to tip and thank them for all their hard work and services they have provided for us during this time.
  7. Another thing to do is to schedule a service for later. Sure those appointments have been cancelled now, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t reschedule for a time later in the future. Simply knowing that some work is coming their way after the stress of being out of work can alleviate some anxiety and make a big difference in this difficult time.
  8. Last but not least, donate. Maybe you’re not trying to make extra purchases right now, but a simple donation can go a long way for a lot of small local businesses and cut them a break financially.

A lot of us in this time are stressed, but local business owners are now worried about their livelihood and if they will have a business to come back to once the restrictions are lifted. We must remember that small businesses are the heart of the community, and communities must stand behind them in these hard and uncertain circumstances. So now is the time to stand up and help push small businesses forward through this pandemic.

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