The coronavirus pandemic has changed all of our lives and reprioritised a great deal of things, including where we shop and what we eat. As supermarkets impose limits on products due to stockpiling and panic buying, and many of us locked away at home to avoid coming into contact with the virus, we’re turning more and more to the internet to buy our food, drink, and other everyday essentials. One option you might not have considered, though, is the small businesses close to your home. Here are some ways to support them.
Say no to refunds
Whether you bought tickets to a pantomime or booked a night away in a hotel, the chances are your entertainment and travel plans have been paused indefinitely. If you’re able to do so, allow the small business to hold onto your cash and reservation to use at a later date. That way, they still have money in the bank, and you have something to look forward to.
Buy gift vouchers
Another way to boost the cash flow of small businesses is to buy gift vouchers which you can redeem at a later date. Whether you want to support your favourite local restaurant, organise an experience day for your loved ones, or treat yourself to some new furniture for the home, gift vouchers are a great option to consider. Of course, we should stress that you could lose your money if the company goes bankrupt, but your support should prevent that.
Opt for home deliveries
If you’re struggling to arrange a supermarket delivery during the pandemic, why not shop from local grocers and food suppliers instead? From butchers who deliver fresh meat to Kerr’s Dairy, which offers milk delivery in Aberdeen, there are so many ways you can give back to the small businesses in your neighbourhood – and enjoy better quality foodstuff, too!
Recommend to friends and family
If you’ve bought products from a local business, be sure to spread the word and tell your friends and family about them. If you’re looking for a gift idea for an upcoming celebration or birthday, you could again buy gift vouchers rather than giving them money, so they can call into your local delicatessen or garden centre and support local entrepreneurs. The last thing we want to happen is for talented business owners to have to permanently shut up shop.
Leave them a review on Google
Online reviews and testimonials are worth their weight in gold, so don’t be afraid to shout about your small business superheroes on Google and Facebook. A five-star review can persuade others to call into the business when they’re next in the area, too, so it’s worth it.
Don’t forget about them
Small businesses – particularly those offering food deliveries during these tough times – have become a lifeline for citizens across the country. We might be relying on them more now than ever, but we must not forget about them when things return to normal. If the local baker has been there for you when you needed bread or flour, show them support in the months and years to come by shopping there regularly. More money should go into the pockets of hard-working people in your community, rather than into the hands of Tesco or Sainsbury’s.
Do you have any tips for supporting local businesses? Let us know and check back soon for more advice on dealing with these unprecedented times. In the meantime, happy shopping!