To call the past couple years a difficult time for small businesses would be an understatement. Due in no small part to the impact of the novel coronavirus, many businesses have had no choice but to reduce their hours, let employees go or close their doors entirely. Fortunately, even in times as hard as these, there are numerous ways to show love – and financial support – to your favorite local businesses. So, if any of your favorite stores or restaurants have fallen on hard times amidst the pandemic, consider supporting them in the following ways.

Take Advantage of Contactless Pickup Options 

Due to the highly contagious nature of COVID-19 and its assorted variants, many businesses are providing patrons with contactless pickup options. Contactless pickup can prove particularly convenient at grocery stores and other businesses in which customers tend to spend a fair amount of time. Additionally, while some businesses require a certain amount of money to be spent in order for contactless pickup to be offered, these sums are generally fairly small. So, if you’re understandably hesitant to venture into crowded public spaces at the present time, simply do your shopping online and take advantage of no-hassle contactless pickup.  

Order Takeout Instead of Dining In 

It isn’t difficult to see why many people are hesitant to start dining at restaurants again. Given the airborne nature of the novel coronavirus, spending time in places where the air is teeming with aerosols can be a risky venture. However, this isn’t to say that you should stop providing your favorite local restaurants with your patronage. Even if you’re not keen on the idea of visiting a restaurant during an active pandemic, you can still order takeout and tip generously. Alternatively, if any of your favorite eateries are currently closed to dine-in patrons, takeout may be your only option. 

So, if there are any restaurants you’ve been missing over the past couple years, ordering in can ensure that you’re able to enjoy meals from your favorite establishments in the comfort and safety of your own home. Phoenix residents with a craving for delectable Cajun seafood would do well to place an online order with the Angry Crab Shack on Bell Rd.

Make Purchases Through the Websites of Your Favorite Stores 

If any of your favorite local stores have online counterparts, making purchases through them can be a great way to help keep these businesses afloat while minimizing your risk of exposure. Furthermore, since some independently-owned stores have so little staff at the moment, reduced operating hours have become very common. So, if you’re no longer able to visit your favorite stores at times that suit your schedule, buying through their respective websites is likely to prove a satisfying compromise.  

Make Monetary Donations to Your Favorite Businesses 

With many independently-owned businesses reducing their operating hours and temporarily closing their doors, their respective proprietors need your support now more than ever. So, if you have the resources to spare, consider making monetary donations to any local businesses that are currently struggling. If you’re unable to find a donate button on a business’s website, get in touch with the proprietor(s) to inquire about possible donation options. 

Don’t Contribute to the Spread 

One immediate way to help your favorite businesses is staying home if you have an active COVID-19 infection. Even if you have a mild or asymptomatic case of the novel coronavirus, the people you stand to spread it to may not be as lucky. Furthermore, if one of your favorite businesses becomes known as a hotbed for COVID-19 infection, their reputation is likely to suffer as a result. So, for the good of local businesses, your community and public health as a whole, stay home – or seek proper medical attention – if you become infected with COVID-19. 

You’d be hard-pressed to find someone whose life hasn’t been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, while the last two years have been hard on everyone, they’ve been particularly difficult for small business owners and their employees. Fortunately, if you wish to loan a helping hand to any of your favorite local businesses, there’s no shortage of ways to do so. In the interest of keeping your favorite stores and restaurants afloat during this difficult period, consider showing them some love through the measures discussed above.