I’ve been a small business advocate for well over three decades now, but, it is incredibly heartening to learn just how valued small businesses are across the UK in the wake of COVID-19.
A new study released today highlights the outpouring of goodwill towards small businesses that has only grown in the UK since the pandemic began, and reinforces society’s dependence on them.
The community spirit we’ve experienced since lockdowns began has translated to consumers choosing to support their own local businesses. The findings show that 66% of consumers in the UK have pledged to buy more from small firms locally.
That support will be music to the ears of businesses like Manze’s Pie and Mash, where hungry punters have been lining up to buy handcrafted pies, green liquor and eels for more than a century.
With three branches across greater London, Manze’s is a stalwart in its local community, feeding generations of families like the one that has owned and run the business since day one.
There are tens of thousands of small businesses around the UK that have the same impact. In fact, 69% consumers surveyed for the study said that small businesses play an active role in shaping the culture of their local area, and they would feel a personal loss if they were to close.
There’s no denying that times are tough for many businesses, large and small, across the country right now. But it’s encouraging to know that the public’s goodwill is firmly behind small businesses. They’re rooting for their local businesses to survive, and will do what they can to support them.
But, time is of the essence. Savvy small business owners should grab the opportunity this goodwill presents, take a look at the themes above and consider what steps could help them prosper.