Did you start a new venture just before the COVID-19 outbreak? Perhaps you are facing the consequences too. But you are not alone, my friend.
COVID-19 pandemic has ruined countless businesses worldwide, and from the reports, it is apparent that small-scale mom and pop ventures took the biggest hit.
For starters, mom-and-pop businesses are family-owned and independent businesses. Weddings got postponed, hotels and restaurants were shut, and that’s when small business owners went out of business.
Giant brands and multinational organizations were able to get shields, tax breaks, financial incentives, and all sorts of help, but small businesses did not benefit from these. They are the most vulnerable in the chain, and this piece will discuss how they have been affected by a devastating pandemic.
How COVID-19 Outbreak Affected Small Businesses
If there is any period that can be said to be uncertain for enterprises, then this is the time. The vulnerability of these small businesses is just too apparent for all to see. They have reported a drastic and heartbreaking plunge in sales and the number of orders. Some cases are so bad that they are just barely surviving, while some just decided to shut down for the moment.
As if low orders are not enough, some had to cope with inventory issues. Businesses that stocked up products shortly before the pandemic’s announcement by the World Health Organization had to cope with massive losses. This is especially true of those ventures that had perishable goods or those whose products expired in their warehouses.
Suppose you add that many of these mom and pop businesses cannot operate online but only physical stores; you will understand the unfortunate effects of lockdowns on their ventures. All these contributed to huge losses, which disproportionately affected the small businesses. Another way this has affected them is that in many countries of the world, the pandemic forced governments to redirect their resources to assist the biggest corporations only, leaving the small businesses in the cold.
How Can You Help?
Even though these challenges are there, the mom and pop businesses are still holding on to hope and have their sense of optimism intact. As an individual on your own, there are several things that you can do to help these businesses.
For starters, you can shop SMALL instead of going to bigger brands. Small businesses need your support.
It is nice for you to patronize these small businesses to help them, but it is even nicer if you are going to refer them to others too. This will expand its client base, something that is very crucial at a time like this.
Getting referrals for their businesses is a vital and productive manner to help them. This pandemic hit the businesses badly, and many did not have time to adapt. Hence, you can help them get back on their feet by working on getting as many referrals as possible for the businesses to keep their hopes alive again.
– Make Online Orders
Even during the pandemic, many mom and pop businesses have still managed to maintain their businesses online. Many of them are still taking orders from their online platforms and will be more than glad to receive and handle your orders.
– Communicate with Them
It is no longer news that businesses are facing a tough time in different parts of the world, but the interesting thing is that the measure you are thinking will help these businesses may not even be what they need. That’s precisely why it is a good idea to discuss with them and ask them the best way you can assist them. You will be surprised to know what they need.
– Spread the Word Through Social Media
Social media is quite powerful. Get on board and spread the word. If you share it with 1000 people, 50% of them will forward it to their friends and colleagues. When the word spreads, these small businesses will get the exposure they need.
You can leave reviews or make a complete video review for the small business. Share it on your social media platform or YouTube.
– Buy The Goods Directly
You can buy the goods directly instead of going to a mall or a branded store. The small business owners have their website which allows you to shop easily. Don’t buy from third party sites such as eBay or Amazon. That’s because small businesses have to pay a certain % to these third party sites.
Mom and pop businesses have been badly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Most of them are struggling real hard to survive in the industry. But even as bad as things are, there are steps that you can take to show your support or help out these businesses.
Go ahead and do what is required!