CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES FOR BUSINESS OWNERS
The FY2022 budget for the District of Columbia is expected to include provisions enabling more funds to be released to support local businesses. As the budget process continues, more information will be made available on funding availability for COVID relief programs for small business owners. Stay tuned!
SBA RESOURCES AND LOANS
In response to COVID-19, small business owners, including agricultural businesses, and nonprofit organizations in all U.S. states, Washington D.C., and territories can apply for a COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL). For loans approved starting the week of April 6, 2021, businesses must show 24-months of economic injury and the maximum loan amount is $500,000.
Note: Businesses within the Barracks Row Main Street Service area are not eligible for the Targeted EIDL Advance and Supplemental Targeted Advance, but other areas of the District might be eligible.
TIPS FOR BUSINESS OWNERS
✓ GET CREATIVE! Could your restaurant offer delivery of raw ingredient packages (Blue Apron style) with recipe instructions for your more popular dishes?
✓ Use time wisely! If you are going to have down-time, make the most of it! Now could be an excellent opportunity to take inventory, cross train staff, re-arrange your products, or analyze sales numbers from the past few years and identify the best products for when you re-open.
✓ If your business is staying open, publish commitment to public health and outline actions for ensuring a clean facility and healthy staff; have hand sanitizer available for customers and latex gloves available for employees
✓ Offer digital gift cards that customers and patrons can buy now and use later
✓ Start, maintain, and enhance business webpages, online shopping opportunities, and social media presence
✓ Keep customers updated on new experiences or products you'll offer when conditions improve
✓ Develop customer membership programs, such as “subscribe and save” on delivery or pickup of coffee beans, fresh produce, etc.
✓ Develop online shopping list services. For example, many grocery stores offer grocery pickup or delivery to customers who submit shopping lists online.
✓ Offer digital services and support to virtually sell, answer questions, and provide customer service
✓ Keep it lively! Offer trivia nights via livestream and provide virtual tours of your shop