Lockdown 2: how can I support local businesses?

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With England’s lockdown 2 set to last until Wednesday 2 December 2020, you might be wondering how you can support local businesses in the meantime. Well, the good news is that there are plenty of options, even if you don’t have much cash to spare. Here are 10 ways you can help your favourite local businesses. 

1. Get a takeaway

Whether it’s pizza, coffee or beer, you can still grab a takeaway during lockdown 2. This is a great way to support local hospitality and brighten your day. Check out what’s on offer from nearby bars, cafes and restaurants – businesses often put menus and promotions on social media pages. 

2. Buy local

We really shouldn’t travel right now, unless it’s essential, so there’s never been a better time to shop local. Lots of places offer home delivery or kerbside pickup options, so you can still shop safely during lockdown 2. 

If your local shop doesn’t have what you’re looking for, you can always ask them to order it in.  

3. Shop online

Many small businesses sell products online – especially jewellery, clothes, perfume and gift sets. So, if you’re looking for some Black Friday bargains or Christmas presents, take a look and see what nearby businesses are selling online.   

4. Buy gift cards

Gift cards are a coronavirus-friendly way to support small businesses right now. Not only do they make great Christmas gifts, but they give local businesses an instant cash boost.

So whether it’s a haircut voucher or a gift card for the family’s favourite restaurant, check out what’s on offer at your local shop.  

5. Check out online classes

Is your local yoga studio or leisure centre shut during lockdown 2? Check to see if your instructor offers online classes instead.

Many trainers, teachers and fitness instructors are running virtual classes through services like Zoom, so this is a great way to support your local businesses during lockdown. 

6. Give tips

Tip what you can, even if it’s just a pound or two. This money goes a long way to helping pay delivery drivers and other staff right now. 

Tip by credit card or debit card, if possible. Remember, card payments are a little more covid-secure than cash, and not every business can accept cash right now, anyway. 

7. Donate if you can

Every business appreciates a small donation, especially during lockdown 2. If you’ve got cash to spare, why not donate it to a small business in need? 

Alternatively, if you know there’s a business struggling in your area, you could always start an online fundraising campaign. This is a great way to bring the whole community together and rally around local shops and services. 

8. Keep paying membership fees

If you can afford to, don’t cancel that gym subscription just yet – membership fees can help small businesses stay afloat during the shutdown.

But if you’re struggling financially and you just can’t afford the monthly fees, check out some of the other budget-friendly ways to support small businesses in this list. 

9. Leave good reviews

If there’s one thing that small businesses need during lockdown 2, it’s moral support. So, whether it’s your favourite coffee shop or your hairdresser, leave positive reviews online.

Not only will good reviews help encourage customers to visit once everything reopens, but they give business owners the boost they need to persevere right now. 

10. Promote on social media

Even if you don’t have any cash to spare, support small businesses by sharing their social media posts and promoting their products. If you don’t have social media, simply spread the word to your friends and family instead. 

Are you a bit of a social media expert? You could always help a small business build its online presence – this is a smart way to make money online, too. 

Takeaway

Every small business needs some extra support right now. But even if you can’t afford to buy anything, you can still show your support by promoting your local businesses and encouraging friends to shop with them. 

Most importantly, stick with your local service providers like yoga instructors, personal trainers and music teachers. Lockdown 2 is particularly tough on the smallest businesses and sole traders, so it’ll boost their morale if they know they have client support. 


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