Most of 2020 has been challenging for our community. Many small businesses are struggling. While most have been allowed to reopen, restrictions and mandates have made things difficult. Revenue is down; expenses are up.
How to Help Small Businesses
Small businesses are the heart of our community. They are usually the first place people go for donations to support local fundraisers, team sports and other community programs. Now they need your help! Since today, September 28th, is Good Neighbor Day, we thought we would highlight ways you can make a difference and help small businesses in your community.
If you have a choice between buying something locally and buying from a big box store or Amazon, choose local! Many of your favorite businesses are showcasing product and services on their websites and Facebook. Remember that local stores fuel local economies. They employ local people. They know you by name. And they offer fantastic customer service. They will often deliver and ship, and they usually offer extra services such as wrapping.
Purchase Gift Cards
If you’re not comfortable going out, purchasing a gift card for future services and goods will help small businesses with their immediate cash flow needs.
Order Take Out or Delivery
With capacity limitations and increased costs, many restaurants are having a tough time of it. If you’re comfortable dining at your local restaurants (outside or inside), do so. Your favorite restaurants can use a helping hand right now!
If you can afford it, tip generously. Service workers are especially reliant on tips, and the pandemic hit them hard. Don’t forget to tip for pick up orders too.
Don’t Forget About Your Local Farms
We have a great farmer’s market. In addition to those who sell there, we have lots of other local farms that sell produce and meat from their stands or by appointment. Some farms may have lost restaurant business and can especially use our help. When you buy local produce and meat, not only are you keeping money in your local economy, but you’re also supporting local jobs. Plus, eating locally means your food isn’t travelling thousands of miles across the country, which produces large amounts of greenhouse gasses.
Keep Your Memberships and Subscriptions Going
If you can afford it, keep your memberships going. Memberships and subscriptions at gyms or fitness studios were probably paused at no charge during the statewide shutdown. But if you haven’t returned to your former workout place, consider keeping your membership intact, rather than pausing or cancelling, especially if you want it to be there when you are ready to come back. Many of these types of businesses are struggling with member retention right now. With reduced revenue and higher expenses, the more people that cancel and pause, the harder it becomes for them to stay financially solvent.
Many businesses have been given limitations by the state and cannot offer certain services you are accustomed to. Understand that their hands are tied. They risk being shut down if they don’t follow the mandates. They’d love to accommodate you, but they don’t have a choice.
Write a Good Review and Share on Social Media
Writing a positive review is a no-cost way to help a local business. Head over to Facebook, Google or Yelp and write something that might be helpful for someone looking for that type of business. Talk about why that business is special or what they have to offer. You can also utilize social media to give your favorite local companies a shout out and interact with their social media accounts. This will help them be seen by more potential customers. These types of things can help drive traffic to businesses, and quite honestly, local business owners can use a pick-me-up too.
As you know, Nicholas / Tobin Insurance has always been very involved in our community. We work with several non profits, and we give back whenever we can. Some of our suggestions are obvious, but perhaps there are one or two ideas on this list you hadn’t thought of!
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Nicholas / Tobin Insurance, located in New Milford, Connecticut, provides its clients the highest quality insurance products and services available today to protect them, their families, and businesses. We offer homeowners insurance, renter’s insurance, car insurance, business insurance, travel insurance and more! Our commitment to service means our team of licensed insurance professionals is here to help with simple policy questions, consult with you to determine appropriate coverages and be available 24/7 when trouble strikes, and you need assistance managing through the claim process.