This Small Business Resource Hub Can Help You Through the COVID-19 Pandemic
The coronavirus is impacting more than just people’s physical health — it’s impacting their financial health, too. Small business owners are certainly feeling that pain: Most small businesses run on a tight budget, and because of the pandemic, they’ve had to temporarily — if not permanently — close their doors.
According to a recent U.S. Chamber of Commerce Special Report on Coronavirus and Small Business, 43% of small business owners believe that they can only last about six months in a temporary shutdown before they’ll have to close their doors for good.
On the bright side, help is on the way in the form of direct cash payments, disaster loans and special business tax breaks. But, understanding what is available, who is eligible and how to apply is a whole other issue.
Score, a non-profit partner of the Small Business Association, has put together a website to help small business owners get answers to their questions and to guide them during these tough economic times. It’s called the Coronavirus Small Business Resources Hub, and it features mentoring, online workshops and other online resources for small business owners who are looking for guidance.
How Can the Coronavirus Small Business Resource Hub Help You?
Here’s what you can expect to find on the website.
During the current pandemic, having a guide through the troubled waters could be extra beneficial. Through the hub, small business owners can be paired with a mentor, one of Score’s 10,000 volunteers who are experienced business leaders. They can be matched by location, and the mentorship can be handled via phone, email, video conferencing, or even face-to-face.
Mentors can help small business owners navigate difficulties in all areas of business including marketing, staffing, scaling and budgeting.
Mentorship is a free service of SCORE and the hub.
The website also offers a number of free or low-cost online workshops and live webinars. These range from local workshops to webinars addressing the difficulties of the COVID-19 pandemic. Some upcoming webinars include:
April 16: National Resources and Policy Updates for Small Businesses Impacted by COVID-19
April 28: Marketing Advice to Combat an Economic Downturn
May 7: Navigating Long-Term Uncertainty and the Aftermath of Disruption
You can read more about these live webinars here. Additionally, there is a library of recorded webinars with topics ranging from social media to tax advice to diversity inclusion.
Go-To for Coronavirus-Related Answers
The government is trying to help small businesses, right? How are they doing it? Where’s the money and how does a business owner apply for it? Who qualifies? These are just some of the questions at the top of business owners’ minds right now.
If you’re not looking for a workshop, but just need answers to some of your questions about coronavirus and how businesses can survive this difficult time, the hub has a library of helpful articles.
You can find information on Small Business Association loans and the CARES Act, as well as tips on maximizing cash flow during downtimes. There’s even information on grants that are currently available.
Tyler Omoth is a contributor to The Penny Hoarder.