• October is Small Business Month!

    October is Small Business Month!

    It’s been a difficult year for many small businesses, with the pandemic proving to be a financial crisis as well as a health one and impacting business owners and their employees.  Labour shortages, the rise of remote work, and the impact of heatwaves and wildfires have added to the challenges. While some continue to struggle, many have pivoted and met these challenges head-on. Canadian entrepreneurs will need to focus on innovation, inclusion, and sustainability to maintain their growth amidst these changes.

    Small businesses provide our essential services, local jobs, and invaluable ways for our communities to connect with each other. So now more than ever, it’s important to take the time to celebrate and appreciate their achievements.

    Small Businesses comprise 68% of all Canadian Businesses
    (Distribution of private sector employees by business size, 2019)

    Sources: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey; and ISED calculations.

    How to support small business in your area:

    • Buy gift cards from your local bookstore, clothing shop, or even a grocery store. 
    • Tip service workers extra.
    • Shop local. Money that’s spent in your community, stays in your community.
    • Like, comment on, and share social media posts from small businesses. Help to spread the word!
    • Find out which businesses now provide services online and sign up for workshops, yoga, music classes etc from the comfort of your own home.
    • Order takeout food from restaurants.
    • Smile, thank them, and say ‘Keep up the good work!  We appreciate you’

    How to celebrate your own small business, your customers, and your team members:

    Join a Chamber of Commerce
    It’s a great way to get involved in your community. Membership will help you become a go-to connection.
    People trust people they know more than people they don't. Get to know more people and they will help spread word organically (and help you build reviews).

    Partner With Another Business
    Find another business who caters to the same people as you do, and dream up a way to collaborate. You might co-host an event, co-write an eBook, or help sponsor a contest where you give away their products.

    Brush up on SEO
    Getting Google to recognize you may seem hard, but being a top search result can position your brand above the rest . Plus, traffic that comes in (and buys!) via organic search is free. Instead of paying for each click, you simply reap the benefit of appearing when someone is looking for your products or services.
    The world is online searching for products and services. If you're not visible and searchable, you're missing out on sales!

    Throw a Customer Event
    A little customer appreciation can go a long way and have a huge impact! It could be something as simple as inviting them to the office for a small event, or hosting a happy hour.
    The real value of these events comes from talking to your customers. You’ll be surprised at how much they’re willing to share and what you can learn from them. Bonus: They’ll feel appreciated and get to meet other like-minded people; helping not only you grow your business, but theirs too.

    Support Other Small Businesses
    Small businesses give back to their local communities through taxes and job creation, and have a huge impact on our world at large. They also share similar struggles, lacking the resources of big brands. They work tirelessly to keep their customers happy, and their employees are often involved in many aspects of the business, rather than very specific, niche tasks. Celebrate and support the other small businesses in your neighborhood this week.

    Small businesses are more powerful when banded together. Help preserve your community and create a sense of belonging.

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