Why It’s Critical to Shop Locally in 2020

Do you want to get some lip balm or freshly-cut flowers? Consider ordering it from local businesses around you instead of rushing off to an online giant or a big store. It would help them a lot. Many grocers and small stores could really use a boost with your orders. If you have a local store that offers what an online giant does, you can as well patrons them to examine the quality of their service. Leave the exotic stuff to the retail giants.

Refill alcohol and sanitizers from local distilleries

The COVID-19 pandemic is plaguing the whole world and sanitizers are sold just about everywhere nowadays. There are many distilleries around you that have stepped up to meet the increasing demand. This means that you don’t have to go far to refill your sanitizer and stay safe.

Also, this next bit concerns alcohol lovers. Are you running your favorite liquor brand? Next time you’re looking to stock up your liquor cabinet, do it locally. Perhaps you’ll be given some special discounts and promotional offers. Don’t forget about the hand sanitizer too. It’s an essential item for this period.

Offer a free consultation

Local businesses need much help, including those that they can’t afford. If you’re an expert in any of such fields, you can offer your services for free. These businesses need legal, accounting, and insurance help to tackle negotiations, debts, and granular disputes.

You can offer a free consultation by calling these businesses to ask for any challenges they’ve faced. However, you have to introduce yourself in the right way and provide evidence to avoid misconceptions. You can talk to them about how best to tackle such problems. They’ll appreciate such help and may treat you to a special service. You’ll be surprised how much progress the organizations can enjoy when their issues have been dealt with.

Be patient with them

Yes, small businesses require much patience from their customers. It’s easy to compare the quality of their service to the big brands around, but that’s just unfair. These startups don’t have the resources to keep up with your lofty expectations. This is not to say that the service or products they offer are rubbish. Many small businesses still manage to do enough.

If you have a local business around you that’s putting in their best to keep afloat and satisfy their consumers, be patient with them. Don’t complain about things that are out of their reach. Your patience and loyalty will spur them on to more success.

How can you support a small local business? You’ll find a list of the best ways to support the startups around you. If you really care for their success, try out some of the tips listed above.

Four Underrated Ways to Support Local Businesses During COVID-19

Purchase Gift Cards

The gift cards are awesome! Buying a gift card is probably one of the most effective ways for you to support a local business. It’s even better if their service is great. If you’ve just enjoyed your meal at a local restaurant or know you’ll be back to shop at the little store, get a gift card. It’s a way of making sure that you patronize their service more than just once. Also, it’s possible to enjoy special bonuses through the purchase of gift cards.

The great thing about gift cards is that you can gift them out to friends and family. This way, they’ll also enjoy the service. Just think of how much good it would do to them and the business.

Shop locally online

If you plan to get something for yourself online, you should consider buying it from a store close to you. Many stores keep enough inventory for people to patronize them online. Have you been eyeing that boutique bag or a fancy piece of local art? Get it from a store close to you. You’ll be doing the business a favor by boosting their online presence. There’s also a chance that you’ll incur lesser delivery fees for the goods which you have purchased. At the end of the day, everyone is happy!

Like and share their social media profiles.

We’re now in a modern age where most things now take place online. There’s a high chance that the local restaurant or store you just visited has a social media profile. Ask for it. Like and share it among your friends. You can also like, comment on, or share their posts as a way to support them.

It’s easy to underestimate the power of social media, but it goes a long way. You’ll make many people aware of the great service which the business offers and grow their online coverage. Some businesses may even offer discounts or promotional prices for referrals. (This is exactly the strategy Rogue Credit Union employed recently.) So, it’s a win-win situation for everybody.

Decline a refund.

Due to certain scenarios, such as the raging pandemic in the world at the moment, local businesses may be unable to meet up with all orders. They may even be forced to cancel planned events and pre-bookings. When this happens, they have to refund the customers. If your order doesn’t cost too much, you may consider declining the refund.

It may seem like a waste of money but it’s not. By declining your refund, you allow the business to recoup some of the costs it has spent in trying to provide that service. If it’s not entirely their fault, then you cut them some slack. Many small businesses find it hard to recover from tough times because customers are always concerned about getting refunds. Try to change your attitude in such scenarios.

Supporting Local Businesses Can Be Quite Easy

Local businesses are those that you come across around you. It could range from the little restaurant down the road to the plumbing business of your neighbor. Local businesses are nothing like the big brands which you see during commercial breaks on the TV. These businesses need as much help as they can get. They do not have the same amount of resources as the major brands in their industry. A small and local business cannot financially support an advertising campaign on radio and TV stations in the region.

Also, a local business has been around for a short period of time and does not have the credibility of the big names. Therefore, people fail to trust the quality of the service. If you ask small business owners about the things they need to get their business moving forward, they would most likely give you a long list of them.

It’s up to customers and people around them to support local businesses. This way, the business can make up for the huge gap in resources. What are the ways to support a local business? They include the following:

Give them great reviews.

Reviews are vital for any business, including large stores, restaurants, and service providers. Make sure to leave 5-star reviews for small businesses on Yelp, BBB, Google, Facebook, and SiteJabber. You can also review small businesses on other platforms that support it. You may ask yourself why reviews are crucial and their function for the business.

Reviews act as a testimony for potential customers of the business to gauge the quality of service or product that they are likely to enjoy from the business. Good reviews basically mean a good product. Reviews are a deciding factor for many people when deciding who to patronize or where to go. It can increase the amount of exposure on that page or product. Many people make it a habit to leave reviews only when dissatisfied. We should look to change this. Let’s offer all the help that we can. Leave genuine reviews that describe how you felt about using their service. Potential customers will read this and it would spur their purchase decision.

Offer generous tips.

It’s not compulsory that you give a tip for every small business that you come across, but you’re encouraged to do it as often as you can. At least, make sure you tip the business if you genuinely enjoyed their service. You may not be able to tip the while restaurant or business with thousands of dollars like some rich folks do. Instead, just offer the little you have and seem appreciative when doing so. It’s going to go a long way.

These small businesses can do a lot with these tips. Some of them even use them to raise their workers. Also, giving a tip feels good and you should do it often. It’s not an easy job to be a waiter or attendant. These people have to spend long hours attending to many customers – without getting tipped. Your tip can put a smile on their face.