As of spring 2021, things seem to be getting better. Vaccinations are being distributed more quickly, and COVID-19 case numbers are dropping in Ohio and around the country.
Don’t look now, but there might be a light at the end of the coronavirus tunnel.
With restrictions being lifted and Ohioans feeling more confident going out and about, we want to remind you that supporting local business is more important now than ever.
The pandemic took a massive toll on local businesses and their employees – many were forced to shut their doors or layoff long-time team members. Surely, we all know someone who lost their job or company in the last year.
As we’re getting vaccinated and spending a little more money (whether our own or our company’s), we have to keep it local. Or else, more of our friends, family and neighbors will lose their livelihoods.
Here are a few obvious and not-so-obvious ways you can support the local economy as it begins to open back up.
Eat and Shop Local
Eating and shopping local are what everyone thinks about when we say support local businesses. Choosing a locally owned restaurant for lunch or dinner means your money stays in your community. And you are more likely to enjoy better service and food.
It's also important to support local shops, grocery stores, pharmacies and entertainment venues. Many of these owners were hurt by the pandemic and still need your help keeping the doors open.
Some Ways to Eat and Shop Local
- Dine-in or carry out at a local restaurant
- Shop at a local grocery store, boutique or other stores
- Buy a local restaurant or shop gift card
- Attend a concert or show at a local venue
- Order a locally sourced catered lunch for your office
- Write a positive review for your favorite local restaurants or shops online
Choose Local Contractors and Service Businesses
Supporting local business means more than eating at community restaurants. Opting for local contractors and service businesses like plumbers and veterinarians keeps money here rather than going to a corporate office elsewhere. Many of these businesses work mainly from referrals, so be sure to tell your friends if you have a good experience.
Types of Local Service Businesses You Can Support
Partner with Local Suppliers
If you own a business yourself or are in a position to make purchases on your company's behalf, it's essential to consider local service partners and suppliers. Signing with national suppliers might save you money upfront, but it will hurt your community in the long run.
Partnering with local businesses not only keeps money in your hometown but also helps build long-lasting partnerships for your business that could be advantageous to you down the road.
Potential Local Business Partners
- Uniform, floor mat and linen company
- Food supplier
- Fleet management
- Chemical supplier
- Maintenance provider
- Cleaning company
- Material handling company
As you can see, there are plenty of ways you can support the local economy as things start to open up again. And it's more important than ever that we keep these business' doors open and their employees working.
Download and print our Supporting Local Business Checklist, and show your support for our community.
Connor is the Director of Marketing at Rentwear Inc. and writes about how uniform, floor mat and linen service can help your company.Connor Clay