Support Small Businesses During the Pandemic
by Annette Pinder
Small businesses have faced unprecedented challenges in 2020. As the COVID-19 pandemic wore on, small businesses continued to confront the economic fallout wrought by the virus.
According to the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), the number of active business owners in the U.S. initially plummeted by 22 percent. Many who managed to hang on as the pandemic has need their communities to continue to help them stay afloat.
In the midst of this, unemployment figures skyrocketed causing small businesses to face an uphill battle in confronting the economic fallout that resulted in a significant drop in retail sales. Those who do plan on purchasing gifts this season can show their support for locally owned businesses in various ways:
Support struggling industries. According to NBER data, retail sales in certain industries continue to lag. Sales of clothing and accessories, and visits to food and drinking establishments, are down 20 percent and likely to rise. Supporting locally owned businesses in these industries can infuse much-needed cash into their operations.
Think twice before buying from big box online retailers. Did you know that you can comparison shop and support small businesses right on Amazon.com? According to the Association of American Publishers, print revenues have increased significantly in 2020 as many people are choosing to spend their time with a good book or magazine. When shopping for books on sites like Amazon, you can purchase them from independent sellers who are often small community bookstores.
Purchase gift cards. With COVID-19 numbers rising and consumers reluctant to visit their favorite stores and restaurants in person, gift cards are a great way to support local businesses.