July 22, 2020
- Small businesses need to make it as easy and safe as possible for customers to support them during this pandemic.
- Customers know what they want, and everybody appreciates their opinion being valued.
Many people are concerned about the fate of small businesses, and not just those businesses and their employees. Social media is full of posts about supporting local shops, and many are making it a point to spend money at their favorite eateries even when the business is only able to offer take out. Other actions people can take to support their local favorites are purchasing gift cards for future use, and sharing posts from those businesses on social media. For those that are leery about venturing out, don’t be afraid to ask if pick-up is available.
Small businesses need to make it as easy and safe as possible for customers to support them during this pandemic. If delivery is an option, make sure that is clear via your website, outgoing phone message, and social media. Many stores offer special hours for those who are more vulnerable to COVID-19, so they can shop in greater safety. If your business is one that doesn’t generally have crowds of people shopping at once, consider offering shopping appointments, where no more than a few individuals are in your establishment at the same time. This could be a great option for small specialty venues such as jewelry stores.
If you don’t have a website, or have one that does not have the capacity to take online orders, make creating or enabling a great website a priority. With a strong website, and an efficient process, it is possible for small, local businesses to outshine the online shopping giants. With an employee making deliveries instead of making shipments through a third party, orders could easily be delivered to local customers the same day.
Talk to your customers. If you have an online presence, ask them what they want to see. Let them know that you care about their well-being as well as your own, and that you are interested in what they think. Customers know what they want, and everybody appreciates their opinion being valued. And it is always smart business to get a feel for what your customers are thinking.
Small businesses are an integral part of our economy and our quality of life. Customers who don’t want their favorite shops to disappear should make an effort to continue their patronage by whatever means available. And small business owners need to come up with creative ways to get their product to customers, and to keep up their visibility.