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7 Ways to Help Small Businesses During the COVID-19 Pandemic

See recent posts by Courtney Elko

Small businesses have been hit hard in the wake of this global pandemic. Restaurants, local shops, family-owned contractor businesses and others continue to lose money as the nation shelters at home to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. That’s why it’s important—now more than ever—to support your favorite small businesses. Every penny, kind word and helping hand can help small businesses stay afloat during these tough times.  

1. Order Take-Out

The restaurant industry is one of the many industries hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. By ordering delivery or curbside take-out from your favorite pizza place or diner, you can help local restaurants pay their bills and employees. Take a break from the repetition of cooking and cleaning up multiple meals a day and order out once or twice a week if you can. Food delivery services like Grubhub and Doordash make ordering food even easier, too!

Related: COVID-19: What to Know About Travel and Things to Do at Home

2. Tip Well

Delivery drivers (who may have been rideshare drivers a short time ago) are going the extra mile to deliver your packages, take-out orders or grocery orders from sites like Instacart. If it’s within your means, consider tipping these delivery workers more generously than you may have in the past. Or, if you pick up a take-out order yourself at a restaurant, make sure to tip on the entire bill as if you were dining in.  

3. Buy Gift Cards

Buying gift cards now to use later at your local boutique, hair or nail salon, or restaurant is a great way to help a small business during this tough time. Consider buying gift cards for any upcoming birthday or anniversary celebrations, or purchase a gift card for yourself as something to look forward to when it’s safe to leave the house and re-enter the community again.

Related: The 9 Best Meal Kits

4. Reschedule, Don’t Cancel

If you had a hair, nail, or eyebrow appointment, or maybe a chiropractic session, car tune-up or HVAC maintenance check scheduled for upcoming weeks, don’t cancel it completely. Rescheduling your appointment for a date in the future helps ensure local businesses can recover more quickly once things begin to open up.

Related: How to Reschedule Your Family Vacation Without Losing Money

5. Write Customer Reviews Online

Find your favorite small business on Yelp, Tripadvisor, Google or Facebook and write them a glowing review. This is a great way to help a small business, especially if you don’t have the means to help them financially at the moment. Write a review explaining how the business went above and beyond, or how an employee provided excellent service. Word of mouth about a great business can be the best marketing there is in town.

6. Give Some Social Media Love

Find your favorite small business on social media and help them to grow their engagement and following. If you can like, share, subscribe, follow and comment on their posts, it will help them gain more online recognition, which could help them to earn more revenue in the future.

7. Purchase Local Online

Whenever possible, try to buy local online. Many things have to be bought from national store chains during a time when the supply chain isn’t at its most reliable. But if you can support your local pharmacy, deli, or produce market instead of a big-box store, the small business owner will be much appreciative.

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