Amidst the coronavirus pandemic, Better Business Bureau serving Eastern North Carolina (BBB) continues to build marketplace trust among consumers and businesses. The need for social distancing has urged people to work from home, led to the closing of storefronts, and caused some businesses to shut down altogether. In an effort to support the local economy, BBB has created a resource page, bbbshoplocal.org, to educate consumers on how they can continue to participate in the marketplace and support the local economy. Businesses are broken down into four geographical regions and provide insight on how consumers can still purchase their products, goods and/or services from a safe distance.
“We are urging consumers to shop local in any capacity they can for the duration of this pandemic,” said Mallory Wojciechowski, president and CEO of BBB serving Eastern NC. “Local business transactions are vital to the stability of our communities and this website helps build trust between businesses and consumers in these trying times.”
BBB offers consumer tips for supporting small businesses while complying with social distancing regulations:
Buy a gift card for later.
Skip the refund and take a rain check.
Commit to future work.
Shop (local) online.
Look for virtual classes.
Get take-out or delivery.
Although not everyone can pay in advance and may be facing financial difficulties themselves, you can still support small businesses by:
Writing and online review at org/leave-a-review,
Liking/sharing the business on social media, and
Improving morale by letting businesses know you appreciate them.
Supporting local businesses is crucial to the economic development of a region, especially during a crisis. BBB encourages consumers to be smart when shopping locally by researching business profiles on bbb.org before conducting business to see their letter rating and confirm it’s a legitimate company.
For marketplace news and scams related to coronavirus, visit bbb.org/coronavirus.