COVID-19 has caused so many changes to occur across the globe. As we continue to adapt to our new environment, we have to remain strong. Through our strength, comes resilience and courage- which has the opportunity to be so beautiful.
In addition to keeping our friends and family members safe during this tricky time, there are ways that we can support our local communities. One way we can show our love and appreciation is through supporting local businesses.
Our support is even more important to small businesses who may be experiencing dramatic changes due to COVID-19 – many having to completely close their doors temporarily. Below, I included 10 ways to support your favorite small businesses during this time period.
10 Ways to Support Small Businesses During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Buy gift cards to enjoy later
Although some small businesses may not be open during this time period, gift cards are a great way to show your support. By purchasing credit to use at a later date, you can plan for experiences and activities to do in the future months, while also providing the business with a little cash flow to pay their rent and other fixed expenses. Better yet, you can make plans to use the gift cards with friends and family members that you are not able to see in-person right now. You could also purchase gift cards to use for upcoming birthdays or holidays – a little early planning never hurts!
Give them a “like” or positive review
COVID-19 has brought much of the world together online. One way to show your support for your favorite small businesses is through supporting their online presence on social media or via positive reviews. Consider writing a review on Yelp or Google to help them build credibility, or leave a comment of praise or thanks on a social platform. Let your favorite small businesses know that you support them!
Get takeout or delivery from your favorite restaurants
Many states still allow people to go out to get takeout or delivery from local restaurants. If this is applicable to you, add a little variety to your day by ordering your favorite meals from local restaurants. This is a great way to treat you and your family, while also supporting the community.
Shop your favorite stores online
Many small businesses have websites where you can shop and purchase items online. Consider buying items online now that you would have typically purchased in-store. This is especially applicable to local boutiques or clothing stores. Everyone needs the perfect outfit or accessory to show off once this self-quarantine thing is over!
Keep up regular payments or memberships
Although your weekly routines may have changed while social distancing, consider keeping up your regular payments to people like housekeepers, gardeners, tutors, or music teachers. If it is financially possible for you and your family, these small regular payments can be the saving grace that keeps local businesses alive during this time period.
Schedule an appointment, reservation, or activity for post-social distancing dates
Make plans for all of the things you want to do in the upcoming months by creating appointments or reservations for the future. This is also a wonderful way to create plans with all of your loved ones that you may not be able to see in-person right now. You can let your favorite small businesses know that you support them now and will continue to be there to support them in the future.
Buy some of your daily necessities from small businesses
Rather than going to large grocery store store chains, consider shopping at local markets, delis, or general stores to get your daily needs. There is a family-owned butcher shop near my house and my family has been purchasing things like bread, chips, and pasta to support their business. You’ll be getting exactly what you need, while also supporting a local family from your neighborhood!
Share your favorite small businesses with your friends and family
During your next phone call or video chat with loved ones, share a list of your favorite local businesses. This is a wonderful way to connect with the people you love the most, while also bringing business to your community. Another option is to tag a friend or family member on a local business’s social media account to pass along the good word. You’ll be supporting your community, connecting with loved ones over shared interest, and going to sleep knowing that you’ve spread a little goodness into the world.
Reach out to your favorite small businesses to learn how you can help
Sometimes the best way to help is simply by asking what they need most! Consider reaching out to your favorite local businesses through email or social media to see how you can support them during this tricky time period. Start a conversation and see what they say. Simply your interest in helping could brighten their day.
Give generous tips
Generous tips can mean a lot to local businesses and employees. Consider tipping more than you would normally, if you are in a financial position to do so. This is especially applicable to people delivering or preparing food, or those that rely on tips as a primary source of income. Those few extra dollars can go a long way.
Our Favorite Small Businesses
One of the best parts of Semi-Sweet Tooth is our list of amazing clients – many of which are small, locally-owned businesses. While several of our clients have online-only presence, others still are focused brick-and-mortar and have had to close their doors.
We are proud to have been the folks that have been brought in to help these clients create virtual platforms and offerings for those that are typically physical spaces. Which means that you can participate in the amazing programs that each off the below have created, no matter where you’re located in the world!
Some of our current favorites include:
This Denver-based, functional training gym is owned by a BA female that has built the most incredible community of members I’ve ever met. Right now, they are offering a wide variety of free workouts on Vimeo and we just started a challenge for the month of April where you can win some amazing prizes like fresh gear and class packs (for those nearby.). Check their Instagram for all the details.
Denver-based cooking school The Seasoned Chef has been around since 1993 teaching recreational chefs how to cook healthy food easily at home. Right now, they’re offering online cooking classes for both kids and adults, while also offering chef-prepared meals that you can re-heat easily at home if you’re in the Denver market. They also always have a cookbook available, which is only $10 right now from locally-owned Tattered Cover.
Owned by a fellow blogger, Denver Darling is an adorable boutique full of women’s and children’s gifts and attire. Right now, they’re offering free shipping and discounted prices on all of their online goods!
Chicago-based Smitten Boutique has gifts galore, but their invitation service is what’s really shining at the moment. A fellow member of the West Loop Business Association, this space has seen the West Loop transform dramatically, while always offering incredibly high quality service. I HIGHLY recommend working with this team if you’re in the market for invitations or paper goods.
Let’s Support Our Communities!
Despite all of the challenges we are facing, there is so much beauty in the global community we have created. We are coming together to support one another in ways that wouldn’t have been possible even a few years ago. Supporting local businesses is another way to keep the love and appreciation going! So let’s stay at home and continue to support the world – by staying apart.
Create a great life!