This is going to be a rough ride. No doubt about it. But there are some things you can do to help your business. We’re all having to look for creative and supportive ways to attract and service customers. That means thinking of new ways to operate in a world of social distancing. While local business encompasses every type of business, retailers are perhaps hurt the worst. While AIBA is telling consumers how and why they should continue to give you their business, we have a few ideas for you too. No doubt many local businesses are already engaging new techniques but we hope this is a help.

1. Go Online
Most of us have a website, your own or social media such as Instagram or Esty. This probably was a supplement to your brick and mortar store. Reverse that thinking. Now your store is a supplement to your online presence—it’s your new warehouse. If your business is any kind of consulting or instruction, go online with webinars.

2. Go Curb Service
Whether you offer music or brunch, offer curb service. Keep a skeleton crew for parking lot delivery. If customers don’t have to come in, it increases their comfort level of doing business with you.

3. Go Old School
Take phone orders for curb service pickup. Something we might have thought of as a luxury a month ago becomes a bare necessity of service.

4. Go Gift Card
Promote your customers to purchase a gift card now for use later. You might even give them a little something extra for buying a gift card. Cash for you, a bonus for them.

5. Go Vocal
Tell your customers how they can do business with you in the time of coronavirus. Tell them loud and clear what you’re doing for them. Reassure them even if you’re not feeling very reassured. To help with that, AIBA has created a downloadable poster for your door and a social media graphic for you to share.

We know this is hard. And scary. But we have The Power of Local and that gives us a community of caring and supportive local businesses. We’re continuing to provide resources from AIBA and others in our community that will help. See our resources blog that we update regularly. While we’re helping you get customers, become another local businesses’ customer.

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