The Daily Rundown

SMB News Daily Rundown: Update for September 29

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Small Business News Highlights for September 29: 

  • Social distancing measures hurt chance of survival, say SBOs
  • Small businesses expand online offerings 
  • House’s new stimulus package includes more cash payments for Americans

Social distancing measures hurt chance of survival

“It’s crucial for us to understand the obstacles our small business customers are facing.”

A recent survey found that 55% of small business owners worry that continued social distancing measures are hurting their chance of survival. The survey results come right as Florida announced that indoor dining at bars and restaurants can resume without restrictions, much to the dismay of public health officials. 

Despite their concern about the toll the ongoing pandemic is taking on business, the number of SBOs reporting a decrease in sales has dropped from 78% in April of this year to 67%. Furthermore, if conditions stay the same, almost two-thirds of business owners report that they can stay in business 6 months or longer. 

Small businesses expand online offerings

“We are adding new products and features to our website daily, and buying strategically and considering more critically the kinds of products folks will want to purchase during this uncertain time.”

Consumer confidence is a 6-month high and many small business owners are taking advantage of the fact as they expand their online offerings for the holiday season and beyond. 

For many small entrepreneurs, this means thinking beyond their usual wares to include items that appeal to consumers during these strange uncertain times. One shop is expanding into bright, comfortable work-from-home attire, while others are offering special bundles and gift wrapping to entice customers and preparing their inventories for big days like Cyber Monday, Black Friday, and Small Business Saturday.

New stimulus proposal includes more cash payments

“I remain skeptical that it’s going to somehow result in a quick action on a package.”

Details on the House of Representatives new $2.2 trillion stimulus package are emerging. While it is unclear if the Senate or White House are willing to budge from their $1.2 trillion bill, the House is moving forward with aid that includes more direct payments to American workers.  

Like the previous legislation, this bill calls for $1,200 for individuals and $2,400 for married couples. Unlike the former bill, it expands eligibility to provide $500 payments for not only children under 17, but also full time students under 24 and adult dependent children. The bill also funds federally subsidized unemployment benefits until January. 

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