• Emma Schiltz

10 Ways to Support Local Businesses & Restaurants During COVID-19

Updated: Mar 22

1. Purchase gift cards

Many restaurants are currently offering discounts or deals on gift cards.  By purchasing, businesses are continuing to make money and you’re able to use it now or later, depending on current carry-out or delivery policies.

2. Carry-out & delivery

Running out of food or just tired of cooking? Even though in many states restaurants & bars are shut down, many places still offer delivery and take-out options.

3. Online shopping

One of my personal bad habits is online browsing, adding items to my cart, and then never actually checking out.  By online shopping at local and small businesses, there’s no need to feel guilty for clicking the “checkout’ button because you’re contributing to the further success of these establishments during a time when their physical stores aren’t able to operate.

4. Consider donating if able

Making a small donation to a local business is a great way to support other community members while practicing social distancing.  Even the smallest acts can benefit so many people.

5. Tip a little more than usual

If you do choose to support local restaurants, consider tipping 25-30% instead of the typical 15-20%. Though the difference is usually only a few dollars, the impact it creates is worth much more.

6. Like/share content & pages

Money isn’t the only way to uplift local businesses within your community.  Something as simple as a ‘Like’ or ‘Share’ of a company’s Facebook page can inspire others to support local retail and restaurants as well.

7. Leave positive reviews/comments

Challenge your friends, family, neighbors, and even yourself to pick 1-5 local restaurants or businesses that you have had pleasant experiences with & share that gratitude with them.  A simple comment on a social media page or a direct message can go a long way in making someone’s day a bit brighter.

8. Encourage friends & family to shop locally

Share information about how to support these small businesses with those closest to you.  Maybe this means buying a friend a gift card, or convincing your family to order take-out from your favorite local restaurant.  Either way, the more we can use our resources to support others, the better.

9. Use Paypal, Apple Pay, Venmo, etc. when possible

A really simple way to support businesses and the people around you is to limit contact in any way possible.  One great example is to do your best to use forms of payment such as PayPal and Venmo to reduce or eliminate points of physical contact.

10. Continue to practice social distancing

Finally, keep practicing social distancing.  Though it is a struggle to slow down and stay at home, it is one of the easiest ways you can support your community and local businesses.  The more care we take in securing the safety of everyone around us, the sooner we will be able to get back into the booths of local restaurants and the company of each other.

Need some ideas? Our clients Northbound Smokehouse & Brewpub, Degidios Restaurant & Bar, and Copperwing Distillery offer carry-out, delivery, and gift cards so you can enjoy social distancing all while supporting local businesses.

Emma Schiltz is a sophomore at the University of St. Thomas studying Music Business with minors in Business Administration and Recording Arts. Originally from Duluth, MN, she is currently interning with Fretless Marketing.


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