The pandemic has hit small businesses hard, even more so than the Washington state economy or larger companies, The Seattle Times reports. There are 600,000 small businesses in the state, and many saw their gross income decrease 24 percent during the first quarter of 2020 as the pandemic began.
But there are ways we can help as a community, especially in the winter months when we may be less likely to venture out for a shopping trip down Main Street.
It may be tempting to score the best deal with a large, online retail store. However, if you can afford it, consider paying a little bit more to buy high quality, locally-made goods from a small business. Especially when giving gifts, locally-made items are a unique, special way to show you care about both your friend and your community.
It also doesn’t always cost more to shop small. You’ll save on shipping costs and you’ll be giving back to support your local economy, which helps everyone. Keeping money local is the reason 57 percent of Americans say they like to shop at local businesses.
Social media is an important part of marketing a business, especially a small business. That’s why you should make a point to follow and like small businesses in your neighborhood on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. This will also help you keep track of when new items come into the store as well as any sales or discounts you can get.
Leave good reviews of restaurants you try or shops you frequent, especially because consumers choose more and more to go to stores based on reviews.
Even in the winter months, small business owners put on fairs and markets to sell and advertise their goods. Seek out some of these events through calendars on your local city government website or on social media platforms like Facebook. Attending these fairs will likely introduce you to new businesses in your neighborhood.
Many small businesses are still able to sell goods online, so if you don’t want to brave the cold, you can still support a store through their website.
Looking for more small businesses to support in your neighborhood? Use websites like Seattle Good Business Network or Support SnoCo to find everything from restaurants to photography to pharmacy services.
Questions about business insurance? Contact a Sea Mountain Business Insurance Specialist today!