Supporting local businesses throughout the COVID crisis

2020 has been a financially difficult time for businesses all over the UK with many businesses closing their doors for good and others struggling to keep them open. Social media has attempted to support local business with the encouragment to buy local instead of going to the global giants however, the professional industries could do so much more!

With the professional industries taking part in charity work, offering food to the NHS earlier in the year and taking part in other charitable work, is this really enough? I personally feel like they could have helped the economy much more by offering a few of their services for free to smaller businesses or at least by reducing costs. There are services which are essential to businesses which are not only expensive but if they decided to drop the service they could end up in even more trouble! This could include things like accounting, IT services, office cleaning services and much more.

COVID Financial

What can we do to improve the situation and help our economy stay above water?

Well we could start buy reducing costs of essential services to help out businesses which are struggling, obviously to a reasonable price as you do not want to put your own business at risk. I have seen a few professional service providers (which I will not name) simply refuse to offer clients a helping hand when they could easily help out with pretty much no expense to themselves, one thing I do not understand is why businesses are behaving in this way. Helping out an existing customer can increase a customer relationship which will not only enable you to hold onto a customer but also be referred to many more potential customers.

Some business owners or senior managers may be reading this thinking "I'm not going to offer a service for a reduced cost or for free, are you crazy?!" and that's fine but it will be remembered. Do you want to be the business in which clients are advising other potential clients to stay away or do you want to be a business where existing clients are telling potential clients how amazing and helpful you were during hard times? Another way you could think of it is that you could break even or make a small amount of profit and keep an existing client, or you could lose them and not have any profit or potential future profit from the same client at all.

If you cannot afford to offer any kind of service for free, payment holidays would also be a good way to assist smaller businesses, while that is a risk, it may help keep a business afloat and you will still get your money in the long run. There are many more roads which businesses could take to assist each other in these difficult times and as a combined force, the UK can come out the other side of this recession stronger than before.

What have I done to help out businesses?

As the CEO of Technically Robust Contractors, I have designed packages specifically including free services which would usually cost upwards of £500 to £1000. Yes this does take away profit and we are providing a service at our own expense but I am focusing on the greater picture and hopefully I can encourage others to do the same.

You may be wondering how we can afford to just offer services for free, well the simple answer is by re-designing the service. In order to offer a service for free and not lose out on too much money, we have re-designed services in a way which allows us to offer a service that acheives the same result but in a different and cheaper way. This does mean that some benefits of the service will not be there but you can always offer the customer an option to upgrade the service for a smaller price than what it would usually cost them. There are many ways we can assist each other in these testing times and together, we can all pull through this.

Thanks for reading, I hope you have a wonderful christmas and new year. Keep your head high and we will come out the other side thriving more than ever before!

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