As lockdown comes to a close and the world is beginning to open up again, it is important to not forget the struggles that a large number of businesses had to undergo during the pandemic. While a number of small businesses were able to flourish, others suffered immensely during lockdowns and quarantine. Small businesses in the United States are the foundation of the country, and yet, according to Forbes, by April of 2020, nearly a quarter of small businesses in the nation were faced with the devastating decision to close their stores for good. In order to continue to support small and local businesses, we’ve provided some tips and advice on ways that you can contribute to the success of your friendly neighborhood businesses.
1. Choose Local Mom-and-Pop Shops and Small Businesses Over Large Corporations and Chains
Shopping at large chains may seem easy and convenient, however purchasing from small businesses provides many benefits. While it may seem difficult to put a halt on all large corporation shopping, choosing small business alternatives is a great way to prevent large corporations from overshadowing local stores that have been struggling to gain popularity. Small shops and local businesses are the heart of any community; Without local businesses, neighborhoods would lack unique characteristics that make them special and different, and therefore must be appreciated and supported.
Small businesses can even provide you with better quality goods than your favorite corporations. For instance, smaller shops allow for customers to bond with business owners. Having a relationship with your local store owners will allow them to provide you with items made with much more love and care than a large business may. Small businesses also provide more opportunity for purchasing original items, along with more room for customizations and alterations.
2. Spread the Word
One of the best ways that you can individually take part in the success of your favorite local businesses is to help them gain attention.This can be as simple as recommending small businesses to your friends and family, or posting their items on social media. As our world’s dependence on technology only continues to grow, using social media outlets like Instagram and Twitter to promote small businesses will allow you to reach a large number of people. Below are some ways you can show your love for your favorite small shops via social media:
- Make sure to follow: Following accounts will let these businesses know that individuals are interested, and want to see more posts. Additionally, those that follow you will see that you enjoy their products as well, and may give them a follow too!
- Engage: Giving your small businesses a simple like or comment on one of their posts can go a long way.
- Use Instagram Stories: Reposting on social media can be a great way to show all of your followers how great small businesses can be!
- Take Pictures at Small Businesses: Posting pictures or messages in stores will allow for viewers to be more motivated to go and shop there.
3. Attend Events Your Favorite Small Businesses Hold
As the result of lesser Covid-19 restrictions, many small businesses near you are offering fairs, fundraisers, sales and other events. Attending such occasions will allow you to display your individual support towards their stores, and even show business owners that their products are enjoyed by customers like you. If you want to exhibit further appreciation for your favorite small businesses, you even host an event of your own. Doing so will allow for small business owners to network, and engage with potential new customers.
4. Share Your Love for Small Businesses by Writing a Review
According to Trusted Shops, “Customer reviews can provide social proof for your shop and its products.” Additionally, writing a review for your favorite local stores will not only show others that their business is great, but will give business owners more motivation to keep working and creating new work. Not only will writing a review be beneficial to the business, but you may even gain incentives and rewards, such as store discounts or bonuses, by joining a referral program.
5. Gift Items From Your Local Businesses to Your Friends and Family
By purchasing pieces to give out to your loved ones, you will be personally spreading brand awareness for your favorite shops. Presenting others with your favorite local store items, will allow others to understand the quality, care and passion that goes into their goods!
The possibilities of what you can give to your loved ones is endless, particularly with today’s use of the Internet. For instance, Shop In NYC, a network that was formed in the midst of the Covid-19 Pandemic, allows for browsers to find cool and nifty small businesses near residents in New York City, displaying products ranging from kitchen utensils to Father’s Day gifts. By searching local businesses through the touch of a screen, residents of any neighborhood are able to explore and discover shops that they may not have even noticed passing in their daily routines. Additionally, online shopping is a much more convenient alternative to sending gifts of nearly any kind.
If you want to let your loved ones choose their own pieces, purchasing a simple gift card is also a perfect way to spread awareness for small businesses!
With the world transitioning back into some sense of normalcy, it is crucial that we do not forget about the small businesses and local shops that have kept us running. Without small businesses, there would be no room for creativity, originality or opportunity for growth. Therefore, with these 5 tips in mind, make sure to head out to your favorite small business and show them some love!