How to Support Small Businesses During the Coronavirus Pandemic – Latest News

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These are tumultuous times for business owners and employees alike. Nonessential businesses are increasingly shutting down temporarily. Plus, with an increase in people staying home and temporary job cuts, there is now less money going back into local economies.

Congress is making an effort to curb the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, including discussing a stimulus package setting aside money for direct payments to individuals and families as well as for small-business loans. However, while a stimulus package is an attempt to revitalize the economy, everyone must do their part where they can.

Government action can only go so far, and it falls to local communities and individual effort to help small businesses in their time of need. Thankfully, if you want to support local business owners but aren’t sure how to do so while complying with social distancing, there are still plenty of options available.

Ways to Support Small Businesses During the Coronavirus Pandemic

1. Continue to Shop Locally (Online)

Nonessential businesses continue to temporarily close across the country. However, even though you might not be able to visit them in person, you can still support local businesses by buying online from them whenever possible.

These businesses may be closing their physical locations, but many are offering online ordering or curbside pickup as alternatives. Make a quick phone call to a local business or check online to see what options are available before heading to Amazon or a major retailer.

2. Buy Gift Cards for Future Use

If you can’t shop online to help small businesses, you can still buy gift cards to these businesses to provide an influx of cash.

Some businesses’ websites make it easy to buy electronic gift cards. However, if this option isn’t available, there are additional ways to put money back into local businesses.

Kabbage has made it easy to help small businesses by creating a gift certificate marketplace that focuses on local businesses. Any business can sign up for free and offer gift certificates between $15 and $500. Business owners receive the money you spend in as little as one business day.

This platform is still growing, and awareness is the limiting factor here. If you want to support a specific small business in your community, message the owner about this program. Signing up is free and fast.

News media company Gannett has also launched a gift card platform to enable patrons to support small businesses. You can add specific small businesses to this list yourself if they have a section on their website that offers gift cards.

Buying something like a $15 gift card might seem like a humble gesture. But every little bit helps, and you can redeem your gift cards at a later date.

3. Support Local Restaurants

Unfortunately, dining in at restaurants and fast-food chains isn’t an option in certain states right now. Thankfully, plenty of restaurants still offer takeout, and it’s an excellent outlet to support local businesses.

The next time you order, don’t just turn to a massive chain restaurant. Take the time to search for local restaurants to see if they offer delivery. Plenty of family restaurants are incorporating delivery or curbside pickup to make it through tough times. Plus, many smaller restaurants are also available on top food delivery platforms like DoorDash.

Many states are also easing up on alcohol delivery restrictions. Ordering alcohol online through Drizly is another simple way to help smaller restaurants in your area and avoid going to stores unnecessarily.

Even if your food is slightly more expensive or delivery options are not as fast, it’s a small sacrifice to make to help keep smaller restaurants in business.

If you can dine inside at restaurants in your state, make an effort to support local family operations. Even going out once per month can make a difference for a struggling business, and it’s a nice reason to get out of the house for an evening.

4. Avoid Cutting Services

If you currently employ someone through the gig economy, maintain their services if you can afford to do so. Many people rely on the gig economy to make ends meet, and this will continue to be the case as people are increasingly unable to go to work in traditional roles.

Ordering food from local restaur

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