Americans are supporting small businesses in the wake of COVID-19

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A new study by OnePoll on behalf of Groupon discovers American efforts to support small business during the coronavirus pandemic. (Photo by Norma Mortenson from Pexels)

Two-thirds of Americans are feeling more optimistic and looking to support small businesses, according to new research.

A survey of 2,000 Americans discovered 75% plan on making a bigger effort to support small businesses as all 50 states are beginning at least some form of a partial reopening this week.

The average respondent even plans to spend nearly $100 a week at local businesses post-COVID-19.

According to the survey, people plan to increase their average weekly spending at small businesses by 16% — in the hopes of boosting their local economy.

Over half (57%) know of at least one establishment affected by lockdown restrictions.

The Groupon study, conducted by OnePoll, aimed to uncover how Americans are supporting local businesses within their communities and found 86% of those polled have gone out of their way to support a local business while in quarantine.

The top way people have showed their support during quarantine is taking an online class or participating in a virtual experience offered by a local merchant (77%).

That was followed by booking summer “staycations” — revolving around activities that are close to home and keeping their kids entertained (65%) — and ordering more takeout and delivery from local restaurants (60%).

And amidst the quarantine, 44% reveal they have tried a virtual workout or exercise class.

Americans miss the simple things in life while quarantined. While going to restaurants and movies topped the list of things people missed the most, 21% also missed their weekly brunch outings.

“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,” said Simon Goodall, Chief Commercial Officer, Groupon.

“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.”

With so many local businesses closed down, Americans attempted to do some things on their own that they normally would pay somebody for.

Whether it’s cutting their own hair, giving themselves a manicure or cooking a restaurant-quality meal, it only took the average person 12 days in isolation before putting their own skills to the test.

Over a quarter (27%) had an unsuccessful experience at coloring their hair while 24% unsuccessfully attempted to give themselves a pedicure.

And as expected, one in four experienced an instantly-regrettable haircut from a friend or family member.

Twenty-six percent of respondents failed at their body piercing attempts during quarantine and another 22% failed to bake a delicious treat during quarantine.

One person broke a window using the vacuum cleaner while another woman said she went so long without wearing a bra, that when she put one back on she mistakenly thought she was having a heart attack.

And with nine out of 10 people feeling bored in quarantine, respondents said eating at restaurants, going to the movies, seeing friends, spending time with family and friends and getting brunch are the biggest things missing from their social lives.

“While we are rapidly adjusting our business to implement a number of new safety measures including aggressive sanitizing and educating our members on best practices, we are incredibly excited to be back at work,” said Katie Stumbo, owner and founder of Phoenix’s Go Conquer Fitness. “The new normal certainly creates some challenges for a small business, so we really appreciate the support of our local community as we reopen our doors.”

TOP 5 THINGS AMERICANS MISS MOST DUE TO COVID-19

1. Going to restaurants 41%
2. Going to the movies 25%
3. Seeing friends 24%
4. Spending time with family 24%
5. Getting brunch 22%

>> Download the video & infographic for this research story <<
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