Small businesses are on the rise. Whether it is due to lock down boredom, financial issues or perhaps we are just becoming more creative, an increased number of us are starting a “side hustle”. In 2020 there were almost three quarters of a million new businesses started, that's up 14% on the previous year.
But running a business isn't all fun and profit. It is hard work, takes up a lot of time and can be really really tough, mentally. Sadly 20% of businesses fail in the first year and 60% don't make it passed three.
Most of know someone who has started a small business, but what can we do to support them? Here are five things you can do to support a small business.
1) SHOP WITH THEM
It sounds obvious but the simplest thing you can do to support any small business is to shop with them. The reason most people start a business is to make money and your purchase helps them to achieve that.
There is a huge myth that small businesses are more expensive than large well known brands, but in many cases that simply isn't true.
Take us, Natural Essentoils, for example. Our natural 110g Makeup Brush Soap is £9 and UK delivery is just £1.99. That's £10.99 delivered right to your door.
A 60g solid makeup brush cleaner from Beauty Bay is £16.95 with a £2.50 delivery charge. That's £19.45. Almost double the price and half the product, or 9p per gram for ours and 32p per gram for the other!
2) LEAVE REVIEWS
When we shop we look at reviews. In fact 90% of us read product reviews before completing a purchase. So a really easy way to help any small business is to leave a review. You can usually do it on their website, social media pages or Google. If you can't find a way to leave a review, get in touch with the business and ask!
3) TELL YOUR FRIENDS
If you have shopped with a small business whose product or services really impressed you, tell your friends and family! Word of mouth is probably the best form of marketing. We are more likely to shop with a business that has been recommended to us. It is sad but according to research if we have a bad experience with a company we will tell more than ten people. If we have great service, we are only likely to tell one other. Lets flip that around!
4) SEND THEM A MESSAGE
Running a small business is hard and often feels very lonely. You worry about everything, especially what customers think of your products and your business. Writing a short email or message to a small business telling them that you are a fan takes only a few minutes, but it means that world to the people running it. We can tell you from experience that we have been moved to tears on more than one occasion after receiving some lovely feedback.
5) FOLLOW, LIKE, COMMENT, SHARE
You are probably already following your favourite small businesses on social media channels such as Instagram and Facebook, but how often do you actually interact with them?
When you stop interacting with social media accounts, you are shown their content less and less. The more likes and comments posts get, the more new people will discover them. So try and comment on your favourite small brand's posts and always give them a like.
Better still, why not share a story or post about them on your own account. Just like receiving messages, seeing a story about products you created feels incredible!
Small businesses offer new and unique products, mad with love. Let's give them our support!