How to Ensure Your Small Business Survives the COVID-19 Pandemic

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How to ensure your small business survives the COVID-19 pandemic.

As a small business owner, the COVID-19 pandemic and the related economic impact may have left you concerned about what the future holds for your company. Even as states loosen certain restrictions and allow expanded business operations, there’s a good chance you’re still seeing fewer customers than usual. Here’s how to keep your business running smoothly for the next few months by taking on certain projects yourself or outsourcing them to qualified freelancers.

Apply for Financial Assistance

If you know that your small business is going to need a helping hand in order to stay solvent throughout the next few months, now is the time to start seeking assistance and applying for any aid you may be eligible for. You may already be aware that the CARES Act includes help for small businesses, but you can also research agencies and organizations that are offering grants or loans, like Yelp, GoFundMe, and Google.

Sometimes, it can be tricky to navigate these application processes on your own, so don’t hesitate to reach out to experts who specifically work with startups. Prioritize applying for grants first. If you’re given a grant, you won’t have to pay the money back in the future! In your application, tell the backstory of your business and emphasize how you would use this money to help your company grow.

Analyze and Reduce Your Budget

There’s a good chance your business is cash-strapped right now, so it’s time to revise your budget. You don’t want to waste money on unnecessary expenses during this time!

Even if you’re low on funds, it might be worth investing in accounting and inventory management software. You’ll be able to use these programs for years to come, and it’s far more efficient than tracking your finances with a pen and paper! PCMag recommends investing in a cloud-based solution so that you can access your data from any computer. Ideally, you’ll be able to purchase software that is capable of handling both accounting and inventory tracking. However, you may still want to seek advice from a small business accountant if you’re wondering where you can realistically reduce your expenses without sacrificing potential profits.

Optimize Your Retail Space

Depending on where your brick-and-mortar retail space is located, you may finally be able to welcome your customers back, as long as you take certain precautions. In addition to providing hand sanitizer at the register and requiring the proper use of masks, you might want to take additional steps to encourage social distancing among employees and customers.

For example, Harver recommends using tape to mark spots with six feet between them in the aisles and near the register. You can also indicate that certain aisles are restricted to one-way movement so that people do not bump into each other. It’s easy to handle this project on your own, so you may not need to outsource basic interior design changes for your store. But if your store is in need of a thorough deep cleaning, you might want to pay a local commercial cleaning service to take on the task!

Invest in Tech Upgrades

Finally, you can utilize this time to update your business’s website, develop an app that customers can use to make appointments or order products for delivery, or begin selling your products through an e-commerce platform. To tackle these projects and other technical initiatives, you should consider hiring freelancers who can provide professional expertise. For example, you can find AngularJS devs, freelance writers, social media managers, and web designers on online job boards.

When you opened your business, you knew that becoming an entrepreneur involved accepting a certain level of risk. If you’ve felt that keeping your business afloat through this pandemic would be an insurmountable challenge, don’t panic because you have plenty of opportunities to recover and chart a course forward. This experience will serve to make you a more confident business owner.

Photo via Unsplash

Article contributed by:

Katie Conroy is the creator of AdviceMine.com. She particularly enjoys writing about lifestyle topics and created the website to share advice she has learned through experience, education and research.

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