Why We Should All Support Small Businesses
While companies like Amazon and chain stores like Target are convenient, small businesses are the backbone of this country. According to the Small Business Association, as of 2018 there were roughly 30.2 million small businesses in the United States, making up 99.9% of all businesses. Of those, nearly 900,000 were accommodation and food services businesses.
Imagine a world without your favorite mom and pop bakery, corner restaurant or small neighborhood pub. Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the world earlier this year, so many small businesses have struggled. Many have found unique ways to stay afloat, while others have shifted their focus to e-commerce and delivery out of necessity.
Small Business Saturday
This year, Small Business Saturday falls on November 28th and provides the perfect opportunity to give back to the small business owners who have put their heart and soul into making life enjoyable.
We’ve put together this list of 10 ways you can easily support food and beverage small businesses from the comfort and safety of your home. Some of them don’t even require you to spend any money! Read on to learn how you can help spread the love.
10 Easy Ways to Support Small Businesses Online
1). Purchase Gift Cards
If you aren’t able to see your parents for the holidays this year, how about buying them a gift certificate for their favorite bakery in town? While you're at it, why not gift yourself a gift card to your favorite local spot to use in the future once restrictions have loosened? Every little bit of cash flow counts!
If the gift recipient doesn’t have a lot of options in their own community to "shop local," consider purchasing a gift card from an e-commerce small business instead. One of our favorites is Baked By Melissa, a woman-founded small food business that bakes and ships bite-sized mini cupcakes.
2). Do Your Grocery Shopping Online
Now that farmer’s market season is coming to an end, you may be looking for other ways to support small farms and food businesses rather than doing all of your shopping at large chain grocery stores.
Farmbox Direct delivers fresh, seasonal and organic produce right to your door with plenty of perks like free shipping and a no-fee subscription that you can cancel at any time. Choose from a number of different sizes of All-Natural, Organic and Juicing boxes as you eat healthy and help support local small businesses without ever leaving your house!
For an easy, no-fuss Thanksgiving dinner, check out Omaha Steaks, which sells high quality meats, sauces, pantry items, desserts, wines and gifts. Purchase items separately, or choose from a variety of meals, such as this Whole Turkey Thanksgiving Feast for 8.
3). Give the Gift of a Subscription Service
A great way to help small businesses on a monthly basis is with a subscription service. One of our favorites comes from Goldbelly.com, an e-commerce site that allows you to order from your favorite restaurants even when you live far away. Choose from subscriptions by city, category (Monthly Bacon Subscription, anyone?) or even a “Best of Goldbelly.”
4). Order Delivery
Can’t bring the pie or cheesecake to Thanksgiving dinner yourself this holiday season? Why not mail your loved ones their favorite local desserts instead! At Cupcake Dropoff, we have compiled some of the best bakeries in cities across the country that offer same day delivery. No matter where you are, you can treat your family while you support their local small businesses.
5). Skip Amazon
There is a big, beautiful world outside of Amazon. If you’re looking for a gift for a foodie, or amateur chef, there are hundreds of locally owned or e-commerce small businesses that sell cooking gadgets and supplies online.
For unique knives, knife sets, blade covers, sharpeners and other fun toys, check out Chef’s Vision Knives. Each knife is made of high quality, durable stainless steel that features a fun, colorful picture of a variety of wildlife, landscapes and cosmic scenes. A portion of their sales also goes to charity, so it’s a win win!
6). Don’t Forget to Treat Yourself
2020 has been a year - treat yourself! If you are a wine geek, we recommend California Wine Club. Gift yourself a wine subscription from a variety of small, artisan wineries. They offer a range of Wine Club levels, from their monthly Premier Series to the Pacific Northwest Series, featuring only the best from Oregon and Washington.
Pair your wine with delivery or take-out from your favorite local restaurant and you’ve got yourself a perfect, relaxing evening that you can feel good about.
How to Support a Small Business Without Actually Buying Anything
We also know that this may not be the year to splurge. With the economy struggling and many people out of a job, not everyone is going to be able to shop for everything that they would like to.
But, that doesn’t need to stop you from supporting the small business community both near and far! Here are a few simple ways to help each other without ever spending a dime:
7). Spread the Word
If you are on social media, find the businesses that you love and promote them! Like their pages, repost their updates and specials or send along to friends. Word of mouth is a powerful form of support.
8). Leave a Positive Review or Edit Online Info
You don’t always have to have made a recent purchase to leave a review for a business. Websites like Yelp, Facebook and Google to leave a love note for your favorite food and beverage establishments. You can also write comments on social media and tag the owners or business. For e-commerce sites, try emailing customer service your review and letting them know they are free to post it on their website or elsewhere.
Another way to do your part in supporting small businesses that you love is by editing and updating any inaccurate info that you find on Google Maps. For example, if a business is coming up as “Temporarily Closed,” be sure and report any updates by clicking on “Suggest a Change.” An action as simple as this can really help drive traffic.
9). Remember Them for Later
Last, but not least, a great way to support small business owners and employees is by keeping a list of small businesses that you plan to support once you are able. Keep the list someplace handy for easy access (your phone works great!) and pull it out as needed. Have an even bigger impact by sharing your list with others in your community.
What Are You Waiting For?
Whether you are looking for gifts to buy on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday or Cyber Monday, groceries for the holidays or treats for yourself, there are so many ways to support small businesses this holiday season.
Don’t forget that for gourmet dessert delivery in the Washington DC area, Cupcake Dropoff offers same day delivery of birthday cakes, cupcakes, balloons and more. Contact us today to place an order, or follow us on Instagram to see what we’re up to.