Consumer Spending Habits Change in Greater Support of Local Business

By Stefano Tromba
May 26, 2020

Aside from fewer cases being reported, one good thing we’re seeing from the otherwise crippling coronavirus pandemic is that it has revitalized a greater appreciation and enthusiasm in support of local, small businesses. Approximately 75% of consumers plan to support local merchants as much as possible once restrictions on non-essential businesses are lifted.

This data comes from a Groupon survey conducted by OnePoll. It surveyed 2,000 people, asking them to gather their shopping plans post-COVID-19 lockdown. A whopping 67% of those surveyed said they’re more hopeful now than when the crisis started. The research examined the type of businesses topping the list. It found restaurants, clothing stores, salons, spas, and bars to be the first establishment’s people plan to start spending money when it’s safe to do so.

The survey also showed that consumers have already gone “all-out” to support small businesses. 86% of those surveyed say they have continued to support locally owned businesses during the lockdown.

The research shows just how consumers have been supporting local businesses during the lockdown. For example, 77% said they have been participating in a virtual experience offered by a local business. 60% of consumers said they have been ordering more curbside and home delivery from local restaurants.

Consumer Optimism Expected to Grow

For small businesses, the research shows a growing, optimistic outlook as well as, growing consumer confidence. It also shows ways small businesses can stay solvent despite various restrictions. As Simon Goodall, Chief Commercial Officer at Groupon commented:

“This crisis has disproportionately affected small businesses and our hearts go out to local merchants, who have often poured their life savings into their businesses.

“As some businesses begin to slowly and responsibly open back up, it’s encouraging to see that many Americans plan to continue to help their communities recover by supporting small, local businesses.

“Even if you live in an area that hasn’t relaxed restrictions or you don’t feel that it’s safe to support them in person just yet, there are still a number of meaningful ways that you can make a huge difference right now such as taking an online class, ordering takeout or delivery and booking future plans,” Goodall continued.

Post-Pandemic: Americans Plan On Spending

An encouraging and most welcome statistic is that the average American plans to spend 16% more at a small business than they did before the pandemic. That comes to approximately $100 a week.

It’s no secret that most people are itching to get out. And most people, according to the survey, miss dining out, going to movies and seeing friends and family.

During these rough times, it’s great to see encouraging news and that for small businesses, better times are coming.

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