The only thing guaranteed in life — including parenthood + entrepreneurship — is change.
Sometimes, that change hits harder than the average. At the time of writing this post, we’re in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. Change is hitting the global economy HARD right now.
People are panicking + rightfully so.
As parents, we’re huge influencers in the global economy as we make the purchasing decisions for the entire household.
Whether or not we’re buying anything at all has a vote. What products + services we’re buying has a vote. But also how we’re buying has a vote.
And when faced with the challenge of change, we want to encourage you to shop small. Support the men + women next door through the uncertain times.
Here are our best recommendations for helping small businesses financially + virtually.
How to Support Small Businesses Financially
Purchase gift cards
Budget ahead for date nights + dance lessons by buying in advance. This gifts businesses some flexible capital to stay afloat financially.
No one might be thinking about Mother’s Day on St. Patrick’s Day, or Christmas in July, but you can be.
Buy the gifts you‘re going to be buying anyways — just earlier + from small businesses instead of with last-minute 2-day shipping from big box stores.
Offer to pick-up + drop-off
Shipping + delivery costs eat the profits for small business owners. You can help offset that financial challenge + give businesses the “labor time” back by offering to do your own local pick-ups/drop-offs.
Doesn’t have to just be food! Also, tip delivery drivers generously.
Request reschedules over refunds
Ask to redeem lessons + appointments at a later date instead of asking for your money back altogether. This keeps the money in the small business + still gets you what you wanted when you purchased initially.
Be flexible about location changes
Many brick + mortar businesses will need to break leases, move locations, or maybe skip the locations altogether + transition to house calls or virtual services.
Stay open-minded: that expression “a house is just a house; it’s the people who make it a home” applies just as much to businesses.
How to Support Small Businesses Virtually
Post on social media
Yes, showing support can really be that simple.
You might frequent the local hole-in-the-wall coffee shop for the best breakfast sandwich + free WiFi every week, but what’s familiar to you might be unknown to others. Do the “obvious” not-so-obvious + give a virtual shoutout.
Take an extra few minutes to frame up a great picture to go with the shoutout, tag the location + the business’ social accounts + add some relevant hashtags.
Ready for more? Be a matchmaker + tag your social media friends on posts of small businesses you think they’d genuinely like. This is organic marketing at its finest + you’re helping both your friend + the small business.
Host a virtual pop-up
Get your friends + family together online for a virtual party. When you do this, you’re helping increase brand awareness + might help encourage some sales for the small business.
Business owners are happy to do all of the planning + execution if you just provide the guest list + show up on event day. As a happy bonus: hosts are often thanked with free products + services. Win-win!
Write a wholesome review
Give the 5-star review (if you mean it!) + take the time to write a full paragraph (or more!) with the details of your experience.
This helps to highlight the genuinely great features of your favorite small businesses, so that when business does ramp back up, they earn + retain customers better.
We’d love to know: how do you support small businesses financially, virtually, or both?
If you’re a small business owner, how do you prefer to be supported? We’d love to expand this post.
Share your insights in the comments to keep the conversation going + thank you, in advance — from one small business family on behalf of many — for shopping small! 🤍