With all of this craziness going on, shopping local has now become a huge part of our daily lives. Where before we would usually go to the supermarket or a large chain store, we are now looking for small businesses in our local area to purchase from instead.
But how do you find them? Maybe you’re a small business owner yourself looking to support others in your local area, or someone who wants to give a little back to those who are being hit the hardest during this time. Whoever you are, this blog is for you!
Thanks to social media, there are now many ways that you can start shopping local and showing your support for small businesses, without even having to leave the comfort of your sofa. Here’s 10 ways you can start supporting local today:
Use Instagram’s new ‘Support Small’ sticker
Instagram recently launched a ‘Support Small’ sticker for Instagram stories, which allows users to tag their favourite businesses on a story with a clickable link. That way, whoever views it can click directly onto their page to check out their stuff. This is an awesome tool to show some love to the local businesses you love the most.
Look out for Facebook community pages in your area
Since the virus outbreak, many community pages have popped up with the hope of supporting small businesses through this time. Use the search bar to look for pages in your area and sift through the posts to find awesome local businesses who are selling their products/services.
Leave a glowing testimonial
You know that business that you totally fangirl/boy over and love everything they sell and stand for? Tell them! Never underestimate the power of a positive testimonial. It will not only make their day, but will help them build credibility and attract interest from people who know you and trust your opinion. This can be done on Facebook, Google or even by sharing an Instagram story and tagging them in.
Use Facebook’s ‘Businesses Nearby’ tool
If there aren’t many community pages in your area, or you are struggling to find local businesses, Facebook has the tool for you! They have recently added a ‘Businesses Nearby’ search function to allow you to see the businesses closest to you for the product/service you’re interested in buying.
Interact with local businesses on social media
Engage, engage, engage. Like their posts, tell them about your experience with their product/service, rave about it in your story to your friends. Small gestures like this can go a long way for small businesses in times of crisis, and it only takes 2 seconds to do! This is also great for when you want to show some love and support but do not have the funds to purchase from them right now.
Buy a gift card to use later
A lot of businesses will be offering gift cards.Treat yourself to a voucher from a day spa, or get a voucher for your friend who is obsessed with local honey. This will help businesses gain a little bit of cash flow during this crazy time and give you or a loved one something to look forward to.
Business not selling gift cards? Offer to pay for your service now and have the appointment later. For example if you regularly get your eyebrows waxed, you could pay 1 month, 6 months or a year in advance.
Sign up to a subscription service
Many small businesses are offering a week/month FREE subscription to try their products. This is an awesome opportunity. You can start this trial and if you love their products you can continue the subscription and tell your friends about it!
Introduce take-out night
Takeaways and restaurants had to close throughout the lockdown period and have taken a large hit. By choosing one restaurant a week to support, you can create a cool family tradition AND be helping out the local community all at once. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, it could simply be ordering some coffee from the local shop or having a movie night in with some pizza from the local, every little helps! Then once you have your food, share some love on social media!! Post a picture of you eating it, tag the business in and tell them how much you’ve missed them.
These are just a few ways you can harness social media to support local businesses right now. This has been a tough time for us all, so supporting each other in any way possible is going to mean so much when it comes to building the economy back up.
And if you’re a small business owner and reading this, then use it to your advantage! Put your products/services on community pages, share a story with your ‘Support Local’ sticker, ask for reviews from your customers. Find out where your people are hanging out and grab the opportunity.
We don’t know what the future holds, but we are damn proud to be Kiwis right now. So keep supporting locals and doing what you do best: being awesome. Catch ya next time.
Ps- If you need a little help getting your business seen on social media, that’s kind of our thing. Get in touch for a chat.