How to support a small business
This is a topic I have wanted to blog about for a while, as it is something I am passionate about. But it has become even more important now, when times are hard for us all in some way or another. Supporting small businesses is so important because without our support they just wouldn't be able to do what they do! Whether that's your favourite independent cake and coffee shop, your local exercise class, a small online business selling handmade items, your hairdresser, the list goes on but one thing remains in common - YOU! They need your support to be able to offer their products and services. Especially now, when many have had to close or when those remaining open are having to operate in new ways.
I appreciate that everyone's circumstances, such as time and financial constraints, are different. You are of course in no way obliged to follow all/any of the points below, or to even continue reading this blog! But if you do have some time to spare and would like to support a small business, please do continue reading as here are some ways you can do just that - and many of the ways are free!
Like, follow, comment and share on social media
This helps the small business get seen by others, who may also like the products or services being offered. Something as easy as sharing a post while you are scrolling through social media can really help a small business get seen by others and by someone who may want to know more about them. Liking and commenting on posts support the business as you keep engaged with them; by interacting this lets them know you are still interested in their posts and what they have to offer.
Tag people in the comments
We've all been there when we are scrolling on social media and we see a post or meme that reminds us of someone so we tag them in the comments. When you see a post by a small business, tag someone you think may also like it!
Leave a review
If you have brought something from a small business, now's the time to leave them a review. This is a task we are all sure at the time of purchasing that we will definitely do...but is something that often gets forgotten about afterwards. Even if it's been a while since you brought something, they will still really appreciate the review! Facebook pages have a Review tab so it's easy to leave feedback for a business. Instagram is a little harder as there is not a dedicated review area - you could either leave a comment on a post or just message the business with your review. Not only will this give them something positive to share with others, but I'm sure receiving a nice message with feedback will make their day!
Recommend to others
When we watch something interesting on Netflix, we are quick to recommend it to our friends. Let's do the same when we are pleased with a product or service we have brought! We are more likely to buy something if it has been recommended, especially by someone we know. If you were happy with the product or service you received from a small business, share your experience with others. Not sure how to do this or what to say? I regularly recommend small businesses I have personally purchased from on my MKG Plaques social media pages. Not only does this support the small business, someone reading might just be looking for that sort of thing too! Take a look and post your own small business shout outs.
Buy gift vouchers
If your favourite small business is currently closed, why not ask if they have gift vouchers available. That way you have supported them financially at a hard time and you can spend your vouchers when they are open again! This would be particularly helpful to businesses you know you are going to be visiting when lockdown is over - for example your local independent coffee shop or cafe, your regular dance or exercise class, your hairdresser, your beautician, those sorts of businesses.
Get on the priority list
When lockdown is over, there are certain businesses that are sure to be really busy. I'm thinking hairdressers, barbers, nail salons, beauticians and other self-care and grooming businesses. Why not ask if they have a priority list - so that when lockdown is over you can guarantee an appointment asap!
We may be in lockdown, but people are still celebrating birthdays, new births and Father's Day is coming up. (Sunday 21st June 2020 in case that made you panic!) Why not buy something from a small business and have it sent directly to someone celebrating a special occasion? Having a special occasion during lockdown is far from ideal but you could help cheer someone up as well as supporting a small business.
Let me know what you think of these seven ways to support a small business and if you have any other ways to help! Don't forget, when you support a small business, you are supporting a dream!