10 Ways to Support Local Businesses During COVID-19
The outbreak of COVID-19 has taken a toll on many people, families, and organizations around the world. It has also resulted in difficult times for many of our local businesses, which are incredibly vital and unique to our individual communities. Some businesses have been forced to temporarily close, and many others have had to scale back or change their operations completely. While it’s easy to feel powerless in a time like this, there are still a few things we can do to support our local businesses.
- Shop Remotely, Shop Online - Many businesses have an option to purchase their goods or services through their website, Facebook, via a phone call or through email. Online purchases are a great way to support local without leaving the comforts and safety of home!
- Order Takeout or Delivery - Most restaurants have found a way to continue serving during this difficult time, and many have curbside pickup or even delivery options that they couldn’t offer before. Now’s the perfect time to order from your favorite restaurant, or to try somewhere new! As long as you don’t have to cook, it will be delicious!
- Purchase Gift Cards – For those businesses who are unable to remain open, purchase a gift card now to use later. This will help bridge the cash-flow gap for those businesses. Buy future you a date night, shopping spree, or lunch with friends!
- Order Ahead – Make your transactions easier and less stressful by placing your order prior to arriving. This will shorted your exposure time and lessen the risk for everyone involved.
- Buy Local – Many of the items you might typically buy in the big city or at the big box stores are available at your local shops as well. Buy local and support small business owners, the people who live in your neighborhood and know your name. They really appreciate it.
- Stay Home – If you are feeling at all ill. A cough, sore throat, fever or runny nose are all signs that you should stay home. You’ll be helping out businesses by ensuring their employees stay healthy.
- Avoid Paying with Cash – This is another simple way to limit the risk of exposure to employees. Credit, Debit, and especially contactless cards and options like Apple Pay or Google Pay are great ways to eliminate touching key pads or handling cash. Plus, these transactions are usually faster, getting you in and out of the shop quickly!
- Write Good Reviews – The Glenwood Area Chamber of Commerce has initiated a #WooHooWednesday! Try to write 3 positive reviews of your favorite local businesses each Wednesday. Facebook, Google, and Yelp are all great sources to write reviews.
- Utilize Social Media – Follow, Like, Share, Comment and spread the news of your local businesses to all of your friends and followers! Did you get an incredible lunch delivered right to your door, or fantastic customer service from your local grocer? Give them a shout-out!
- Be Understanding – We are in unprecedented times and some businesses have either been forced to temporarily close or have made the difficult decision to do so for safety reasons. Be understanding. Know that each business is different and they are doing what’s best for them, and try to support them in any way possible. Reach out to the business owners or employees to ask how they are doing, or to simply let them know you support their decisions. It means a lot!
These simple changes can go a long way in helping businesses improve cash flow, keep employees on payroll, or just to feel connected and boost morale.