Are you looking for ways to help small businesses during the lockdown? That’s great, give yourself a high five or a pat on the back for being an awesome human being. Lockdown is hitting many of us around the world hard financially and mentally. Many people have lost their jobs or have been forced to close their businesses with no real idea as to whether they will be able to re-open again due to loss of finances or irrevocable changes to their industries. There are creators and entrepreneurs who have found their sole streams of income disappear overnight.

For those that are lucky enough to still be operating or who have closed their doors temporarily, there are things we can do to help. If you’re anything like me, money is tighter than ever due to the lockdown. Our family has had to deal with a reduction in working hours and putting potentially lucrative opportunities on hold. We don’t have money to donate or to buy products in order to keep the small businesses we love afloat. But that doesn’t mean we, (or you) can’t support local businesses in other ways.

how to support small businesses during lockdown pinterest image

1. Buy a gift voucher to use when companies re-open

Many small business owners I’ve spoken to have said people showing their support by buying gift vouchers has not only lifted their spirits but should mean they’re able to weather the storm and not go under. You can buy gift vouchers for yourself or gift them to others. Know that you’ll have something fun to look forward to when the restrictions on work and travel are restricted. This could be anything from a voucher to get your nails done to a cottage break in the countryside.

 

2. ‘Furlough’ your services rather than cancel

Some friends and acquaintances who are lucky enough to have gardeners, cleaners etc have decided to keep paying them, (sometimes at a reduced rate). They don’t expect for the hours not worked during the lockdown to be made up after the lockdown ends. These lovely people understand that the loss of earnings could have a detrimental and long term effect on these services.

Of course, not everyone is in a  financial position to do this. Many of us are having to cut back on everything that is seen as non-essential in order to keep roofs over our heads. If that’s the case, it can’t be helped. But if you are able to keep on staff, pay for contractors etc, then maybe it’s a good idea.

3. Write a review about their services or products

Writing a review for a product or service you’ve loved can really help. It won’t take long for you to do but can have far-reaching and lasting effects on the company or creator in question.

  •  this can be a Google places review
  • a testimonial sent directly to them that they can post on their own websites and social media accounts
  • a testimonial on their social media pages
  • a testimonial linking to the company on your own social media pages

4. Like / share the company’s social media posts to help them reach larger audiences

We all know how fickle the algorithms are on social media sites. The more engagement a post has, the more the site will share the posts with a greater number of people. So even by liking an image or post, you are letting sites such as Facebook know that the business’ content is of value and it will in turn put it in of more people’s feeds. Liking, sharing or commenting all give posts extra juice. It costs you nothing but can make all the difference to the reach of a post for a small business.

 

5. Champion products or services to your friends and family

If you’re asked to recommend a product or service, don’t forget the small businesses and creators. Many, particularly if they are relatively new or have been operating at a loss, will not be eligible for government schemes set up to help businesses through the pandemic. With personal recommendations being liquid gold and still the most valuable source of business for so many, don’t underestimate the power you weald when you recommend a product or company to someone else.

 

6. Buy their online offerings in the meantime

Depending on the type of business, some small businesses have done an awesome job of pivoting online. Whether it is buying an online course, or ordering a delivery where you would normally attend a brick and mortar store there are plenty of options.

 

7. Shop local

Plough some money into the local economy if you can. This can be local grocers, small ‘mom and pop stores’ or sole traders who may hit more acutely by the current financial crisis the COVID-19 pandemic will have caused. If you want them to still be in operating when the lockdown lifts, now is a perfect time to show your support.

 

Are there other ways you’re helping small businesses during the lockdown? If so, do let us know in the comments section! If you like this post or you found it helpful, don’t forget to share!

 

7 ways to support small businesses