Shopping Local in Challenging Times
– Burlington Downtown Business Association
During this time of uncertainty, most agree that the local economy will be weighed down by the impact of COVID-19. The impacts on small businesses and independents can be particularly heavy as we practice social distancing.
Small businesses are by nature risk takers. They choose to invest in our community and our neighbourhoods with the hope that the community will give back to them with the same vigor. These are the entrepreneurs that hire our children, sponsor our sports teams and community groups – they are your neighbours.
Our local businesses in Burlington enrich our community daily and are the lifeblood of our sustainable local economy. In the case of our Downtown independent businesses, they are often the people you know by name. We celebrate when these local names succeed and regret when they are forced to close their doors.
Shopping locally during this challenging time for Burlington business is more than a “good idea” it is a necessity to help keep these small businesses flourishing.
The largest collection of independent businesses in our City is Downtown; a dynamic collection of over 400 unique entrepreneurs. For many of these businesses their success relies on the personalized connections they have made with their patrons.
As our community makes a conscious effort to reduce close contact with others during this challenging time there is an instinct to find a “one-stop shopping” solution for our everyday needs. This tactic tends to overlook the incredible value that comes from patronizing your favourite, neighbourhood independent business.
Our small business community has proven to be a resilient and adaptable group that champions innovation. Now it is the Burlington public’s turn to create innovative ways to support them with many products & essentials available at our local merchants.
Here are ways to support small businesses online from the safety of your home:
- Shop small business online. Even though their doors may be closed, business owners are still hard at work bringing their business online, and most are available on social media. Reach out to them individually with a DM (direct message) and ask how you can support them. Many of our Burlington businesses have implemented incentives to shop online so please utilize this option as much as possible. Click here to view complete list of online retailers.
- Order takeout or delivery. We’ve compiled a list of local eateries currently offering delivery, pre-packaged meals and curbside pick-up on our blog here. Don’t forget, parking is currently FREE in downtown Burlington to help facilitate easy “run in and grab” takeout options.
- Consider purchasing a gift card for future use – they’ll receive the revenue now while foot traffic is down and you’ll have something to look forward to!
- Take some time and submit a positive Google review for your favorite business … yes, the Google reviews you’ve been meaning to write ever since you had the best slice of pizza, the best manicure, the best bouquet of flowers, etc… let’s use this downtime to help boost the ratings of the businesses in your community!
- And once you’ve submitted those 5 star reviews, why not add a few more businesses to your social feeds? It’s time to connect online make some more virtual connections!
- Attend an online fitness workout – many fitness providers have posted their workouts on their social media channels.
- Consider supporting a local not-for-profit/charity: at this time, local organizations are working hard to continue to take care of those most in need at time when support is even more in demand. To the extent that you are able please give generously directly to local not-for-profits and charities to ensure that critical support continues to be available to those most vulnerable within our community.
Linked below are some helpful documents:
The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OEDC) interim economic outlook: “Coronavirus: the world economy at risk”.
Canadian Chamber of Commerce – Pandemic Preparedness for Business
Halton Region: www.halton.ca/coronavirus
Government of Ontario: www.ontario.ca/coronavirus
Government of Canada: www.canada.ca/coronavirus
World Health Organization: www.who.int